With the current roster at 16, which players will make the Houston Rockets final roster?
With the offseason entering a state of calm, amidst the Kyrie Irving noise, teams prepare to determine which players will make the cut. That means the Houston Rockets are preparing their final roster.
With that in mind, these are the players that will likely make that roster. Barring any injuries, these spots will be made up in a depth chart style.
Let’s begin with the point guard position.
While James Harden was spectacular at the point, Chris Paul is here to take some ball handling pressure off “The Beard.” As a result, CP3 is the number one choice at point guard. But who follows behind him? While Isaiah Taylor had a spectacular Summer League, is he ready to handle being number two on the depth chart? Probably not. Another option is Bobby Brown. So it looks like it could be CP3, Brown, and Taylor. With Harden sharing point guard duties at different times, this could actually work.
In addition to point guard duties, Harden is also the number one shooting guard.
While Harden was the point “God” last season, he will see more of a return to the traditional shooting guard position. However, who follows Harden at number two? The reigning sixth man of the year, Eric Gordon, of course.
After Gordon, it’s a toss-up. Possibly P.J. Tucker plays some guard while also being a small forward? Maybe Tim Quarterman makes the roster and fills in at the third spot. My guess would be Harden/Gordon/Tucker, in that order for the Houston Rockets.
Trevor Ariza also has more help.
While Trevor Ariza is our best wing defender, he too now has some help. No doubt that Ariza is the number one at the small forward spot. Should anything happen to him, the Houston Rockets have a viable back up in P.J. Tucker. There is also a third option in Troy Williams, who earned a spot with his spectacular Summer League play.
In addition to those three, Luc Mbah a Moute could play some small forward if needed. But the depth chart points toward an Ariza/Tucker/Williams trio. But Mbah a Moute is a nice 3-and-D option to have.
The Houston Rockets have some big guys that can shoot and defend.
In addition to Ryan Anderson, the Rockets have some great options to back him up. Luc Mbah a Moute can shoot the 3-point shot, he has a good mid-range game, and he is a solid defender. Behind him is a young rim protector who can also shoot the three in Zhou Qi. Qi may even spend some time playing the five if needed.
So for the power forwards it looks like it’ll be Anderson/Mbah a Moute/Qi. Cameron Oliver is another intriguing option at that position, too.
Perhaps later in the season, Chinanu Onuaku joins the roster.
Finally, the center spot.
Wrapping up the roster is of course the Rocket big men. Clint Capela showed some great growth and will only get better. Nene is a great backup and mentor. Tarik Black returns to a familiar situation to round out the centers.
So a big man trio of Capela/Nene/Black seems like the way to go. Zhou Qi could also spend some time at the five in other rotation situations or on nights that Nene gets rested.
The final roster could like the following.
Point Guards: Paul/Harden/Brown.
Shooting Guards: Harden/Gordon/Tucker.
Small Forwards: Ariza/Tucker/Williams.
Power Forwards: Anderson/Mbah a Moute.