Brett Davis-US PRESSWIRE
One player who is flying under the radar this preseason for the Houston Rockets is Gary Forbes. If you told me Forbes would make the team before the first preseason game I would have thought you were insane. After seeing what he’s done in three of the four games so far I think he has more than just made the team, he may be earning himself minutes in the rotation.
Gary only got 5 minutes of playing time in the game against the Memphis Grizzlies. I’m not sure why, since he put up really good numbers in the first three games. Where his playing time will come from, I’m not sure, but if you look at his numbers compared to what Jeremy Lamb and Carlos Delfino have done so far they may shock you, or you make just think “hey, it’s only been four games.”
So far in the preseason Forbes is averaging 7.3 points, 2 rebounds and 1 assist in 13 minutes a game. He’s shot just 35% from the field, but he’s also shot 40% from downtown. He floats around the three point line with ease and always seems to find the open crease in the defense. The corner three seems to be his shot and he has capitalized on it so far. This is young man who can run the point if needed, as well as shooting guard and small forward. He’s very versatile and at 28 he’s a bit of a veteran. He’s fought hard to get into the league and to stay in the league. I expect the same when it comes to keeping a job in Houston
His numbers may not be very impressive, but let’s put them up against Jeremy Lamb, who is averaging 8 points, 4.8 rebounds, 1.3 assists and 1 steal a game. He’s shooting just 36% from the field and 33% from three. Yes, his numbers are a bit better than Forbes, but Forbes only averages 13 minutes a game. Lamb is getting 20 minutes a game. If you do the math Forbes is really the one putting up the better numbers so far. The difference is that Lamb looks to be the future. Forbes is the guy fighting for a job. Who do you think deserves the spot even if Forbes has the better numbers?
If you compare Forbes’ numbers to Carlos Delfino’s the same question comes up. Delfino is averaging 8.8 points, 3 rebounds and 1.8 assists so far. He’s shooting 38% from the field and 37% from three. Once again Forbes gets just 13 minutes a game while Delfino is getting 22 minutes per.
If circumstances were different, Forbes would easily have a spot in the rotation. But he’s in a tough spot. Do you choose him over the future in Lamb and a veteran in Delfino? Most people will probably say no. But if Forbes continues to get chances to show what he can do and he capitalizes on them I think he earns a spot and minutes on the team. I know it’s a rebuilding stage but on a deep team like this you would normally play the best players. Right now Forbes is playing slightly better. Let’s see if he keeps it up.