More work ahead Guard Aaron Brooks went from playing in the summer league last July to becoming the Rockets' second-leading postseason scorer (after Yao Ming), an experience he said has ended his doubts but made him hungry for more.
"You always have questions about yourself, about the starting point guard thing, if you're ready," Brooks said. "I think I answered that. I can compete at a high level. I'm looking forward to playing again. The season is over, but next season starts in about two weeks.
"I'll work on getting stronger, work on my defense, watch a lot of film, work on my passing. What don't I want to work on? I want to work on everything and get better in every area."
Coach Rick Adelman is confident the improvement will come.
"He's a starting point guard in this league," Adelman said. "He's just going to get better. There's areas we'd like to see him continue to keep improving on. Distribution of the ball is one of those. You'd like to see his assists get up there more. That's him picking and choosing his spots. A lot of that is the progression we make as a team, too."
Sooner the better
Von Wafer not only wants to sign a free-agent contract with the Rockets but hopes to do it quickly. Free agents may sign beginning July 8.
"I love it here, love the fans, love the organization, love Yao Ming, love where the franchise is headed," Wafer said. "I just hope we can get it done as soon as possible so I will be here and get to work.
"I'm not satisfied. I still have a lot I can show to everybody and I can get a lot better at. I'm happy with the progress I made, but I'm going to try to work the hardest I've ever worked this summer."
No number in mind
Guard Ron Artest said he has not considered the sort of free-agent offer it will take for him to remain with the Rockets .
"I'll take everything into consideration, but it's hard to get into that right now ? what I'm thinking as far as somebody making an offer I can't refuse," Artest said. "We'll try to get this thing done as fast as possible. I don't have a figure in mind. Personally, I feel I'm one of the best all-around players in the NBA."
Center Yao Ming hasn't determined his travel schedule for the offseason, but he could remain in Houston until late June to have the condition of his fractured left foot checked before he returns to Shanghai.