Houston Rockets Daily Rocket Science: Power forward edition

Feb 8, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets forward Donatas Motiejunas (20) brings the ball up the court during the first quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 8, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets forward Donatas Motiejunas (20) brings the ball up the court during the first quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports /

Well, D-Mo and Marcus Thornton are back in Houston.

The Detroit Pistons voided the trade that sent Donatas Motiejunas and Marcus Thornton to Detroit, Joel Anthony and a second round pick to Philly, and a protected first round pick to the Houston Rockets. Though the last update prior to the trade was that D-Mo’s back was 100% and that he was cleared to play, the Pistons balked after performing their own physical on the seven footer.

Today’s Daily Rocket Science will be focused on the news about Motiejunas, as well as the overall state of the power forward position for the Houston Rockets. Let’s jump right in.

Houston Rockets news and notes from around the web

I don’t know how I should feel about the trade situation. On one hand, the Rockets got the player back whom I was sad to lose. But knowing his back may not be in as good condition as I thought changes things, as does the awkward strain that is now on D-Mo’s and Thornton’s relationship with Houston’s front office. I could go into the positives and negatives of the trade being negated, but Tyler Conway of Bleacher Report already did so.

"Most of all, this is a big loss for Motiejunas, who is a restricted free agent this summer. He was already going to have medical red flags hampering him, and this deal being voided will likely suppress his market even more."

To stay on the subject of injuries, Terrence Jones has to hold some kind of record. That guy has missed more time from weird injuries and freak accidents than anybody else I can think of. The editor at Space City Scoop, Tamberlyn Richardson, updated us on the fact that T-Jones is back in action after missing time due to complications from a car accident suffered earlier this month. Hopefully, he’ll be able to finish out the season healthy, but his track record isn’t all that great.

"Concussion sustained in a car accident occurring en route to catch plane for game (to Phoenix, February 3, 2016) Lacerated eyelid sustained while trying to rebound the ball Despite not breaking or cracking his ribs he suffered partially collapsed lung after diving for a lose ball (March 19, 2015) Right hip strain (March 6, 2015) Back spasms/strain (various games last season) Nerve inflammation in his leg couldn’t be explained (as to why it occurred) or fixed for months forcing him to be on injured list to  start 2014-15 season until his return January 29, 2015"

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Despite the fact that D-Mo and T-Jones are back on the roster and available to play, it doesn’t look like either of them will be getting the starting nod. According to Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle, interim coach JB Bickerstaff intends on starting recent reacquisition Josh Smith at the power forward slot for the remainder of the season despite not boasting a stunning stat line so far this season with the Rockets.

The start was Smith’s first of the season and the lineup was the Rockets’ 19th, one more than all of last season.

“The bigger lineup … adds another playmaker to that group, a guy who has good chemistry with Dwight and James and Trevor and Pat because he can create for all those guys,” Rockets interim coach J.B. Bickerstaff said.

The Houston Rockets, at 8th place, will try and distance themselves from the 9th place Utah Jazz tonight. The two teams have nearly identical records, but the Rockets have a one game edge on Gordon Hayward and company.

The road back to relevancy is a steep one and the Rockets have their work cut out for them. The Jazz are a gritty defensive team and will do their hardest to make tonight a tough one for James Harden. The Rockets were able to win both the teams’ meetings so far this year, so let’s see if they can continue that streak.

Send our Editor any Rockets-related article/video/tweet/gram/vine that we may have missed via Twitter direct message to @TTOTambz.

Next: What's next for Ty Lawson and the Houston Rockets

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