While the Rockets have made
little progress in chasing a new power forward in free agency, they moved Friday
toward keeping last season's starter.
Rockets general manager Daryl Morey and player agent Calvin Andrews, who
represents Rockets forward Chuck Hayes, said after their initial meeting that
they were confident that an agreement would be reached for Hayes to return.
"It went extremely well," Andrews said. "We didn't talk about specific
numbers yet, but we're very optimistic he will be re-signed as a Rocket. He is
at the stage he wants some security. But we are very optimistic things will work
The Rockets have the right to match any offers Hayes could receive as a free
Hayes averaged 5.6 points and 6.7 rebounds, starting 43 of the 78 games he
played last season.
"As a preliminary meeting, I thought it went well," Morey said. "We'll
continue to go back and forth with them. We feel optimistic as well."
Andrews said he would like to see what else the Rockets do at the position to
help Hayes have a better idea where he fits with the Rockets. Morey has also
spoken with agents representing Darko Milicic, Joe Smith, Malik Allen, P.J.
Brown and Mikki Moore but has not been negotiating to sign any of the free
He said he has spent more time working on potential trades than with free
Morey has had talks with David Falk about signing Rockets center Dikembe
Mutombo, with Mutombo making it clear he wants to return to the Rockets for one
He said that the contract for first-round pick Aaron Brooks is now with the
lawyers, with the relative formality of signing Brooks expected before the
Rockets leave for Las Vegas on Monday.
Morey said he does not expect to sign second-round pick Carl Landry until
later in the summer after the team determines how it will use its midlevel
Last season, the Rockets used some of their midlevel exception money to sign
second-round pick Steve Novak after the summer league.