The Houston Rockets could have the best offense in the NBA
By Mason Hicks
The Houston Rockets have done a lot of work this offseason and that very well could pay off. There is another team in the NBA that many believe boast the league’s best offense, but Daryl Morey has positioned the Rockets for success and that is looking to become a reality.
Mike D’Antoni has nearly always directed an efficient offense, but his 2017-2018 Rockets just might be the best offense he has ever run and here is why.
When D’Antoni coached the Phoenix Suns, he had a very talented point guard by the name of Steve Nash. Some of you may know him. Nash ran his offense to near perfection with impeccable vision and floor-running paired with an ability to create his own shot.
Daryl Morey went into this offseason with a mission: let’s win… all of it. Let’s take home the gold.
In order for Mike D’Antoni to run his offense to true perfection (even better than a season ago), he needs a true pass-first point guard who can be a lethal threat in both the passing game and in scoring. Morey knew Coach D’Antoni needed another Steve Nash.
The modern-day Steve Nash needs to be a point guard who is essentially a pass-first guard. He needs to be able shoot the deep ball with great accuracy and finish around the rim. Did I mention he has to be one of the league’s best passers?
Chris Paul is the perfect fit for D’Antoni’s offense.
That player would be Chris Paul. CP3 has long been one of the top point guards in the league. He brings a true old-school mindset of getting your team involved. His vision has been second-to-none for years now, establishing him as a perennially great point guard.
After Daryl Morey crafted a genius move to nab Chris Paul from the Clippers and join him with James Harden, Mike D’Antoni now has his floor-running point guard. But he also has something he’s never truly seen before: an MVP candidate at the shooting guard position who can play backup point guard.
Essentially when you look at this current Rockets offense, it is like you are taking one of the best players in the league in James Harden and placing him on the Suns team from years back when Nash was running one of the better offenses in NBA history. Except there is one difference, this Rockets team might have even better three-point shooting and perimeter defense.
Chris Paul joins James Harden in Houston likely as the number two scorer, which is no problem for him. With the respect that will be given to him from opposing defenses, the Beard will assuredly find some open lanes and wide-open triples.
Not only will he have a lethal partner in the back court, CP3 will also have Houston’s version of Blake Griffin in Clint Capela. Don’t expect Paul’s lob numbers to fall much at all, as both Capela and Nene (surprisingly) showed impressive jump last season and are a threat around the rim.
And it doesn’t stop there. The Rockets have Trevor Ariza and Ryan Anderson, both of which can eclipse 40% from downtown. They will stretch the defense and give Paul and Harden more room to work their magic.
The Rockets improved defensively, too.
And it gets better. Daryl Morey went out and signed two defensive juggernauts: Luc Mbah a Moute and P.J. Tucker.
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Both Tucker and Mbah a Moute mirror the same style of play as Trevor Ariza. They are legitimate threats from beyond the arc. Ariza likely will shoot the deep ball better and that is why he will start, but the difference is not much. Both Tucker and Mbah a Moute would likely start on any other team in the league. What they bring to Houston’s bench will not go unnoticed.
Even when both Chris Paul and James Harden are resting, the Rockets have the reigning Sixth Man of the Year coming off the bench in Eric Gordon.
Eric Gordon can score with the best in the league. His percentage from deep last season was great, which is why he won the 3-point contest in February. Not only can Gordon snipe from deep, he can also get to the rim and put the ball in the cup. Too bad we must wait until deep in the first quarter before we even see Eric Gordon, but what a great to problem to have!
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Lethal starters paired with a full starting-quality bench will give the Houston Rockets the best offense in the league in the upcoming season. They have more threats on their roster than any team in the league.
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