LAUNCH TIME: Rockets eager to blast into preseason

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Tuesday marks the beginning of the preseason for the Houston Rockets, and with all eyes on the addition of Carmelo Anthony, head coach Mike D'Antoni is doing everything he can to calm team chemistry questions.

"If great players can't play together, the U.S. Olympic team would be awful," D'Antoni said with a grin.

Anthony has been the subject of much criticism with his reluctance to come off the bench last season in Oklahoma City. But he quickly calmed those fears during Media Day and in training camp, stating he was willing to do whatever it takes for the betterment of the team.

Whether Anthony gets the starting nod or not, the Rockets are confident that they're in better shape right now than they were at the start of last season.

RELATED: Rockets start training camp for 2018 NBA season

The Rockets finished with a league-best record of 65-17 before losing in seven games to the eventual champion, the Golden State Warriors.

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Anthony say he'll do anything to help this team win.

Now with a revamped and star-studded roster, this iteration of the Rockets is ready to run as one to a third championship in franchise history, one step at a time.

"We're not the same team as last year," D'Antoni said. "We're not a 65-win team. So far we've got zero, so let's make sure we take our baby steps."

RELATED: Rockets Media Day puts star power front and center

The Rockets will play five preseason games, including a home game against the Shanghai Sharks, which are owned by former Rockets center Yao Ming. The regular season will tipoff at home on Wednesday, Oct. 17 against the New Orleans Pelicans.
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Rockets Media Day boasts new addition Carmelo Anthony

  • F Carmelo Anthony
  • G Brandon Knight
  • G Michael Carter-Williams
  • F Marquese Chriss

  • F Trevor Ariza
  • F Ryan Anderson
  • G Joe Johnson
  • F Luc Mbah a Moute

Tuesday, Oct. 2 - vs. Memphis Grizzlies (Legacy Arena - Birmingham, AL)
Thursday, Oct. 4 - vs. Indiana Pacers (Toyota Center)
Sunday, Oct. 7 - @ San Antonio Spurs (AT&T Center)
Tuesday, Oct. 9 - vs. Shanghai Sharks (Toyota Center)
Friday, Oct. 12 - @ Memphis Grizzlies (FedEx Forum)
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