Kevin McHale returns to coach the Rockets - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Kevin McHale returns to coach the Rockets

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The Houston Rockets announced Kevin McHale has rejoined the team and is coaching Saturday against the Dallas Mavericks at Toyota Center.

NBA sources told FOX 26 Sports earlier Saturday that McHale could return to coaching as soon as Saturday night.

"It feels good to be back," McHale said prior to the game with the Mavericks. "I've been gone a pretty long time.

"Hopefully it's the right time. I don't know if there's ever a right time."

The Rockets announced on Nov. 10 McHale was taking a leave of absence because of a family matter.

His daughter, Alexandra "Sasha" McHale, passed away on Nov. 24 at the age of 23.

She had been hospitalized because of lupus.

"Needless to say it's (been) a terrible month," McHale said. "It just felt like it was time to come back, go back to work and be around the guys."

McHale missed 13 games.

"Just excited to see him again, breath of fresh air," said Rockets guard Jeremy Lin. "He had that big smile that he always has. Great to see that."

Assistant coach Kelvin Sampson has been the Rockets acting coach while McHale was with his family.

"I thought Kelvin did a tremendous job, I really did," McHale said.

Sampson's record as acting coach was 7-6.

"He did a great job," said Rockets center Greg Smith. "He imposed his will on defense.

"He was doing everything coach (McHale) wanted him to do."




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