Rockets News

Josh Smith The Enigma

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Jan 23, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Houston Rockets forward Josh Smith (5) reacts against the Phoenix Suns at US Airways Center. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Good

3 months ago I had a terrible nightmare that Austin Rivers was straight balling out on the Rockets. Hitting pull up jumpers, taking James Harden to the rack and finishing over the outstretched arms of Dwight Howard all while mocking Harden’s cooking dance. I tried waking up right away but my body wouldn’t let me, The sights I saw during this nightmare reminded me why I made a vow to myself that I’d never watch a horror film ever again. If you haven’t watched “Insidious” chances are you have great friends that you should value for the rest of your life. If you have, we have something in common… our friends are jerks.

After a week of being held captive in a make believe world where Austin Rivers was arguably the greatest to ever play the game, I woke up to perhaps the SECOND greatest Houston comeback I’ve ever witnessed (nothing will ever beat T-mac’s 13 in :35 NOTHING). You guys know exactly which game I’m talking about, no need for a recap because I guarantee you that every 3 Josh Smith bombed from deep during that comeback is still fresh in your memory. It was glorious, matter of fact, at my funeral I want the paragraph in this image engraved on my tombstone.

The Bad

Sadly, despite the heroic efforts of Josh “I Am Legend” Smith, he was lured away not too long ago by the same exact team he wreaked havoc on. As sad as the departure of our american hero may seem, in hindsight this move may have benefited us more than anything.

Lets face it, Smith was a turnover waiting to happen… seriously as much as I praised the guy for saving our season against the Clippers, he made plays during the regular season that left you speechless. Not the good speechless either. The speechlessness that happens when you’re taking orders at a burger joint and the customer asks for a cheeseburger without the cheese.

Don’t get me wrong, Smith was awesome and played fantastically with Houston after basically being cut from the Pistons. I was excited about the acquisition because of how great of a defender he was and his underrated vision as a passer at the forward position. Without Smith, we probably wouldn’t have ended the season as the second best team in a loaded Western Conference.

The Ugly

Unfortunately, Smith’s gifted vision is half of the reason why I couldn’t stand watching him sometimes. Josh has a bag of tricks that’ll frustrate you from threading the needle to a play that hasn’t developed, throwing lobs that no earthly human is physically capable of finishing (okay maybe Lebron) oh and my favorite… grabbing a defensive rebound, then taking it coast to coast only to run into 2 defenders resulting in a turn over. Not to mention he’s a terrible free throw shooter.

Smith’s departure helps Houston in 3 ways.

1. We won’t be seeing anymore of this (from Smith at least).

2. With Smith leaving, this gives Kevin McHale more flexibility to develop the young guys while experimenting with some small ball line ups (maybe we see Trevor Ariza at the 4 in some games?).

3. I’m not quite sold on the fact that DeAndre Jordan and Chris Paul made up. It’s pretty clear that Jordan wants a bigger role offensively as a reliable post option, something that he’s obviously not. How is Doc Rivers going to manage the relationship between Paul and Jordan while dealing with the expressive personalities of Smith and Lance Stephenson? The only thing I see going well for this Clippers team is that Blake Griffin is going to continue to make dope KIA commercials.

Dear Josh

“Josh, I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for all the memories we’ve shared together. From awaking me from the dreadful Austin Rivers nightmare to making me pull my hair out for every knucklehead play you made. You saved our season and gave this city hope. What makes you the man I want on my tombstone is the fact that you continue to help us despite your departure and for that you will forever be known as the good, the ugly and the bad.”

Next: McDaniels Has Springs For Legs

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