In recent days, the Houston Rockets surprised almost everyone when they acquired Chris Paul via trade from the Los Angeles Clippers, and signed James Harden to a record $228-million contract extension. However, the biggest surprise came Monday when team owner Lex Alexander announced that he will put up his team for sale. In a statement, Alexander said he reached the decision after much deliberation with family and friends, adding that chief executive Tad Brown will oversee the process. The team’s value is estimated between $1.6 billion to $2 billion.

After his announcement, NBA commissioner Adam Silver issued a statement, calling Alexander “a true competitor who always searched for the right move to make his teams better." Under his ownership, Silver said Alexander created a culture of excellence with strong management.

Rockets will take their time to find the right buyer

According to Mark Berman of Fox 26, the Rockets' front office will take their time in finding a new team owner, saying they want to find the right buyer. Brown, for his part, expressed surprise over Alexander’s decision to sell the team, but he clarified that the move wasn't health-related. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, Alexander's decision to sell the Rockets surprised not only the NBA but also those within the franchise.

Rockets became champions, contenders under Alexander

After purchasing the Rockets for $85 million in 1993, the team won back-to-back championships with Hakeem Olajuwon leading the way. With Alexander at the helm, the Rockets made it to the postseason 16 times and won two NBA titles. Recently, Harden led the Rockets to the Western Conference Finals but lost to the San Antonio Spurs.

The Rockets have been trying to work out a trade with the New York Knicks involving All-Sar Carmelo Anthony. However, the Knicks temporarily shelved negotiations after hiring a new general manager in Scott Perry The Rockets are planning to build their own version of the Big 3 with Paul, Harden, and Anthony.

The Rockets also agreed to a contract with forward Luc Richard Mbah a Moute, according to Chris Haynes of ESPN.

The length and financial details of the deal were not immediately available. Mbah a Moute will play for his sixth NBA team, after previously suiting up for the Milwaukee Bucks, Sacramento Kings, Minnesota Timberwolves, Philadelphia 76ers, and the Clippers.

The Clippers used Mbah a Moute as a starting forward in his two seasons in Los Angeles. He averaged 6.1 points per game last season, making 50.5 percent of his 2-point attempts, and 39.1 percent from beyond the arc.