After approximately three-and-a-half NBA seasons in Houston, including three extended playoff runs, veteran forward PJ Tucker is moving on from the Rockets to the Milwaukee Bucks.
But before talking about his new team, which became known with Wednesday’s trade agreement, Tucker looked back on the nearly four years that have passed since his July 2017 decision to sign with Houston. In an extended message on his Instagram account, Tucker wrote:
It’s crazy, but for a place that I love with all my heart, I can’t find the words to describe how much the City of Houston means to me. The city embraced me from day one and stole my heart, with all the love I was shown.
I gave my blood, sweat, and tears on the floor and sacrificed it all to try and bring a chip [championship] to the city. H-Town, thank you for giving me some of the best years of my life. I won’t soon forget you.
Tucker, a longtime defensive stalwart for the Rockets, is in the final year of his contract and recently requested a trade after he wasnt able to come to terms with the team on his desired contract extension. The Bucks will also offer the 35-year-old a chance to compete for his first NBA title, which Tucker couldnt realistically do with the Rockets following the departure of superstar guard James Harden in January.
In addition to his defense, Tucker was a clear leader in Houston’s locker room and one of the league’s toughest players. Over his time with the Rockets, Tucker played in the most games of any NBA player. Houston also won at least one playoff series in each of Tucker’s years with the team, which no other Western Conference team did over that span.
During Tucker’s first season with the team, Houston went 65-17 which was easily the NBA’s best mark that season and the top record in team history. While the Rockets never won a championship in that era, it remains one of the most successful runs of all-time for the franchise.