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Rockets still have options without Yao

Plan B.

It's something not enough NBA teams talk about, and maybe more should. Because when the whims of injuries mean franchise players can be here today and gone tomorrow, vague concepts like "cap flexibility" and "luxury-tax planning" can become hugely important overnight.

The Houston Rockets are perhaps the league's best example of this. During the 2006-07 season, they had two All-Stars in Tracy McGrady and Yao Ming, but they lost in the first round of the playoffs. During the 2007-08 season, they lost Yao late in the season, still ripped off 22 straight wins, and nearly won the division before, again, losing in the first round of the playoffs.