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NBA fines Houston Rockets $150,000 for Dwight Howard comments

Houston's GM punished for speaking about Howard's decision prior to July 10
07/10/2013 4:53 PM ET
By Chantz Martin

Houston Rockets GM Daryl Morey cost his team $150,000 for speaking on Dwight Howard.(AP)
The Houston Rockets were fined $150,000 by the NBA on Wednesday for making public comments about Dwight Howard during the free agency moratorium period, according to USA Today.

After Howard Tweeted his decision to spurn the Lakers and sign with the Rockets on June 5, Houston’s general manager, Daryl Morey, made comments on Comcast SportsNet in Houston and posted several Tweets about Howard’s decision; those comments violated league rules, which prevent teams from discussing deals or negotiations with specific players during the moratorium period from July 1 to July 10.

Executives of all NBA teams were notified of the fine via email and reminded of the appropriate time to speak out about free agents according to USA Today’s sources, who requested anonymity because they themselves were not authorized to speak publicly about the fine.

The Rockets also were fined in June for tampering, thanks to a post on their official team website that discussed several players who were to become or were expected to become free agents but were technically still under contract to other teams.

The NBA ended their league-wide moratorium on Wednesday, allowing teams to officially make trades and sign free agents, and the league also set the 2013-14 salary cap at $58.679 million – a slight increase from last year’s cap of $58.044 million.

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