The Houston Rockets have been fined $150,000 for discussing Dwight Howard’s move from the LA Lakers.
USA Today claims two unnamed sources have confirmed the fine, which comes after Rockets general manager Daryl Morey discussed the centre’s decision during the free agency and trade moratorium period – which lasts from July 1st to July 10th this year.
Morey made several remarks on Twitter in relation to Howard’s decision to move to Texas, and subsequently spoke to TV station Comcast SportsNet Houston about the deal.
Despite Howard’s choice being public knowledge, the rules regarding the moratorium are clear with regards to discussing free agency moves or trades in the 10-day window.
"Under league rules, such comments are not permitted during the moratorium period,” read a memo sent to league executives by the NBA.
“Please be reminded that during the moratorium period, teams are not permitted to announce publicly that they have agreed to terms of player contracts or offer sheets to free agents."
It’s not the first time the Rockets have been in trouble with regards to the free agency, having been fined in June for discussing players who were still under contract with teams but could become available the following month.
On the court, the arrival of Howard should go someway to making the Texas-based franchise play-off contenders on a regular basis, with the 27-year-old all-star set to join James Harden and Jeremy Lin in the starting line-up.