Silas set to make NBA head coaching debut with Rockets tonight

FILE - In this Dec. 15, 2017, file photo, Charlotte Hornets associate head coach Stephen Silas argues a call during the first half of the team's NBA basketball game against the Miami Heat in Charlotte, N.C. The Houston Rockets and Silas have an agreement for the Dallas assistant to replace Mike D'Antoni as coach, multiple people with knowledge of the deal said Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2020. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton, File) (Chuck Burton, Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

HOUSTON – It took 20 years in his journey, and Wednesday night, Stephen Silas finally gets to enjoy his debut as an NBA head coach when he leads the Houston Rockets against the Mavericks at the Toyota Center to tip off the new season.

The Rockets have had a good preseason but one filled with drama as the James Harden storyline plays out. Harden is still a Rocket and is scheduled to start against Dallas. Can they contend in the Western Conference and if so where do they stand against the likes of the Lakers, Clippers, Warriors, Nuggets, Mavericks and Jazz who are considered top contenders. With new pieces like John Wall, Demarcus Cousins and Christian Wood on board the season could be productive. The future of Harden will certainly play a factor.

What do we know about Stephen Silas?

He’s the son of former NBA player and coach Paul Silas. He attended Brown University in the Ivy League and played for their basketball team. He graduated in 1996 and began working with the NBA’s Retired Players Association. In 1999, he began his coaching career where he served 20 seasons as an assistant. He has worked for Charlotte (twice), New Orleans, Cleveland, Washington, Golden State and Dallas.

Why Silas is a fit in Houston

Silas has a great reputation for teaching the game and relating to his players. He’s got a creative offensive mind and has built a loyal following throughout the coaching circles with the work and results he has been able to produce. His stamp was all over last season’s Dallas Mavericks team that was the best offensive team in the NBA.

Can he win big in Houston?

Silas will need a little time to implement his system for a team full of several new faces and young players. Camp was abbreviated as was the offseason, so how teams, including the Rockets, come out of the gates will be interesting to watch league wide. He came here thinking James Harden was in the picture but now realizes Harden’s time in Houston may not be for much longer. It’s been a distraction, but Silas has done a great job during camp of putting his stamp on the team and delivering his message.