Should Josh Smith Return to the Houston Rockets?
By Michael Knight
Throughout last week, rumors have swirled around the potential return of a former Rocket.
Josh Smith has definitely had an up-and-down road with the organization of the Houston Rockets. He has been a playoff hero for the team in 2015 and a below-average (at best) player the year after.
In his two stints with the Rockets, Josh has averaged 10.4 points, 5.1 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game. However, he only shot 34% from the field in 2015-2016, which bounced him out of the rotation and the NBA.
Houston has been interested in Josh Smith for quite some time. Even before he signed with the Pistons in 2015, the Rockets were one of the main teams looking to sign him. When they finally got the opportunity when Smith was bought out, they pounced and he was a great addition to the squad that reached the Conference Finals. The Rockets did the same thing in 2016 when the Clippers traded him to Houston, but without similar results.
Now, after a good year in China, Josh Smith is ready to be back in the NBA. Will the Rockets look to sign the close friend of several Rockets players?
Josh Smith Has Been Working Out With Several Rockets
Last week, J-Smoove posted a picture on Instagram of him working out with James Harden, Zhou Qi, Chris Paul and Tarik Black. Here is the picture:
Outside wit it! @jharden13 @cp3
A post shared by Josh Smith (@noigsmoove) on
Josh Smith has already played with a few of the current Rockets players and has developed some friendships. James Harden, Trevor Ariza and Clint Capela are the main three that Smoove has played with previously in Houston. Also, he played briefly with Chris Paul in Los Angeles during his brief stint there. Could that lead to the players wanting Josh back?
Just spoke with Josh Smith, formerly with the #Rockets. Very interested in a return to the team and a deal could be in the works soon.
— Kelly Iko (@KellyIkoNBA) August 19, 2017
Hate to Break it to You, But…
Unfortunately for Josh Smith, he probably is not needed in Houston. His athleticism is not the same as it used to be, and his shooting in China was still bad. He shot 29% from deep with the Sichuan Blue Whales.
Smoove would be used as the backup power forward who can (kinda) stretch the floor. However, the Rockets already have Luc Mbah a Moute for that role. And Luc can play better defense. While it would be fun to see Josh under Mike D’Antoni, it is likely not worth it for the Rockets.
Josh Smith will always be a hero for the Houston Rockets. If it were not for him, the team would likely not have made the Western Conference Finals in 2015. However, the Rockets should leave his legacy at just that. The third acquisition of Josh Smith is not something the team needs at this point.
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