• Print

June 30, 2004 - Jeff Van Gundy (Rockets Head Coach), Carroll Dawson (Rockets general manager), Leslie Alexander (owner), Tracy McGrady, Tyronn Lue and Reece Gaines addressed the media at a press conference held on the court at Toyota Center in front of 2,500 fans.


On the trade and acquiring McGrady:
"I don't think there's a better player in the NBA than Tracy and the good times are going to roll now in Houston. We had to give up some great players, Cuttino (Mobley), Kelvin (Cato) and Steve (Francis). I wish them well in Orlando. Everybody wants me to read stats on Tracy but that's not what Tracy cares about, Tracy cares about winning championships in Houston and with Tracy and the rest of the players we are a long way there. This is a great day for the Rockets and a great day for the city of Houston."

On the excitement built around the change:
"This is exciting not only for the franchise but for the city of Houston. Anytime that you can pick up four players of this magnitude you have to be excited."


On coming to Houston and the enthusiasm of the fans:
"In my seven years, I have never seen anything like this. I appreciate the love ... I'm just looking forward to something great happening in the city of Houston. And believe me, something great is going to happen."

On his play fitting with Coach Van Gundy's style:
"I'm coming here with the attitude (that) I'm going to let this guy coach me. I feel I'm a coachable player. Whatever I have to do to sacrifice, that's what I'm going to do, so I think I'm going to fit in great."

On how the Western Conference is different:
"Playing on the East it's a lot more challenging because the Eastern Conference has a lot of great guards and every night I really had my work cut out for me. On the West, it's made of a lot of big men and I hope that I come here and do what I did in the Eastern conference and try to do it better and hopefully turn this franchise around."

On how long he's planning to stay in Houston:
"I'm looking to end my career here in Houston."

On playing with Yao Ming:
"It is truly a blessing to have a guy like Yao Ming who I think is going to be dominant in his league. I'm coming here to try and help him get better and he is only going to help make the game much easier for me so I'm excited about him."


On the trade and acquiring the new players:
"Whenever you make a trade of this magnitude you have to give to get greatness and I want to take a moment to thank Steve (Francis), Cuttino (Mobley) and Kelvin (Cato) for the great year that we had. It's very hard to trade players because when they put on your uniform and play with heart and passion and lead you to the playoffs it's difficult, but we feel we owe it to Rockets fans to put the best product we can on the floor. Certainly with this trade we feel we have made a step forward. We're going to do something special this year and for all the years to come."

On McGrady's skills:
"He can be the premier defensive player in the NBA. He's got that type of quickness. He's a tremendous passer. When you're looking to establish the culture of a team you're looking for your best players to buy into your vision and my vision has always been the best players lead you in the areas of work and unselfishness. There is a lot of pressure on myself and on him (McGrady) ...and you can't run away from expectations. Your choice is to meet them or exceed them and we are going to try to exceed the expectations that we have."