A NEW ERA IS HERE
All the reasons Christian Wood looks like the real deal for Rockets
Thursday night, the Rockets faced the Spurs and I personally enjoyed the ball movement inside of head coach Stephen Silas' offense. The Rockets' head coach called plays that involved screens and moving without the ball. James Harden killed the narrative of not being able to play off the ball, as he scored off catch-and-shoot multiple times. In my opinion, Harden is buying into Silas' system. Harden finished Thursday night with 20 points, nine assists, and seven rebounds in 27 minutes of action.
James Harden dropped 20 PTS - 7 REB - 9 AST in 27 mins 🔥 Makes the game look easy https://t.co/Fd0GkEq4Yp— NBA Central (@NBA Central)1608261869.0
Another thing that I enjoyed was the play of 6'10 Christian Wood, as he was dominant from all over the court. Harden and Wood destroyed the San Antonio Spurs in the pick-n-pop and pick-n-roll formations. Woods was effective inside for the Rockets, as he used his big frame to control the paint. He also wasn't hesitant to shoot from long range, as he shot 2 of 6 (33%) from the perimeter. Wood even collected 10 rebounds versus the Spurs, which is another reason that micro-ball will not be missed. At the end of Thursday's game, Wood finished with 27 points in 24 minutes.
Christian Woods on the pick-n-pop and pick-n-roll with James Harden. “It was great, he was talking to me when he… https://t.co/8p5oL45J28— Zachary Allen (@Zachary Allen)1608276289.0
It was a pleasure watching Wood being disruptive with his creativity towards the basket. When Wood was 8-10 ft from the hoop, he was able to create off the dribble. This is a huge upgrade from Clint Capela, and very encouraging to see more production from a big man in Houston's offense. Wood deserves to be the starter over DeMarcus Cousins because of his youth, athleticism, and upside.
Christian Wood’s highlights from his #Rockets debut: 27 points on 10/18 shooting, 10 rebounds. https://t.co/gC850o4TfU— Alykhan Bijani (@Alykhan Bijani)1608261641.0
Eric Gordon looks more inventive playing in Silas' offense and became extremely active. Gordon looks more confident, as he shot 44 percent from the perimeter and finished with 23 points Thursday night. Of course, Gordon has been through recent struggles with shooting the basketball, but if he stays healthy and optimistic, he'll have a great season. Silas has created more opportunities for Gordon off the ball, as he scored the first basket on a variety of screens.
EG: on Silas basketball IQ. “It was good, we tried to keep it very spaced, five-man out. It’s all about driving i… https://t.co/DPYR6eIr48— Zachary Allen (@Zachary Allen)1608276124.0
The roster looks completely set for this upcoming season. David Nwaba, Sterling Brown, Bruno Caboclo, and Jae'Sean Tate could equally fight for rotation minutes. All four players have been impressive inside of preseason and training camp. It will be a tough decision for Silas to make because of the talent of each player. Those four definitely had something to prove during training camp and preseason.
Brown's efforts have been noticeable on defense, and he's also been able to run the point on offense. Which the Rockets desperately need, so they have a backup for John Wall. Caboclo has been impressive on offense because of his shooting and being able to set screens. Nwaba has shown ability on defense for the Rockets and is also averaging two assists per game. Tate can become great in the pick-n-pop and pick-n-roll for the Rockets, as he scored 11 points on Tuesday night versus the Spurs.
Hopefully, Harden stays, Cousins and Wall stay healthy, Wood continues to dominate, Gordon remains confident with his shooting, and Silas stays consistent with the ball movement on offense. That's a lot of ifs, but this roster has some serious potential if they can put it all together.