Houston Rockets: Omer Asik Practices For The First Time

By Michael Ma

The Dwight Howard/Omer Asik experiment is now officially under way. The sight of seeing both centers on the floor at the same time had many wondered how it would look, but had to be put on hold as Asik suffered a calf injury that has prevented him from making his pre-season debut.

April 14, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets center Omer Asik (3) drives to the basket against the Sacramento Kings in the second quarter at the Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Asik was able to practice Thursday, which was his first full practice, and may possibly be available for the Rockets next pre-season game on Monday against the Dallas Mavericks.

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“He did everything today, so that is a great sign,” coach Kevin McHale said.

With his return possible for a pre-season game, McHale may experiment with yet, another different starting lineup. That could include having Howard start at power forward, with Asik controlling the center spot.

The Rockets have had a different starting combination in each of the 4 pre-season games played thus far, and with the dissatisfaction that Asik voiced early in the off-season when Howard signed with the Rockets, now is the time to try out having both players start the game. Asik’s work in practice on Thursday caught James Harden’s eyes.

“Omer looked really good,” Harden said. “Explosive, strong, finished the ball real well, ran the floor real well.”