Houston Rockets: Clint Capela is focused on staying aggressive

Photo by Bill Baptist/NBAE via Getty Images
Photo by Bill Baptist/NBAE via Getty Images /

Clint Capela of the Houston Rockets isn’t worried about leading the league in field goal percentage. He just wants to stay aggressive.

Clint Capela has played some very good basketball for the Houston Rockets this season.

Coming into this season, it was pretty obvious that the continual development of Capela’s game would be a big part of Houston’s short and long-term success. The 23-year-old continues to set rock solid screens and finish lobs, and he’s starting to become a legitimate defensive presence.

Capela is averaging 13.5 points, 11.4 rebounds and 1.8 blocks in 25.7 minutes per game, all career highs. In fact, Capela was leading the NBA in field goal percentage, but he lost that lead after a 3-of-7 shooting performance against the Lakers.

For Capela, he just wants to focus on staying aggressive around the rim, not having the highest field goal percentage, via Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle.

“It’s something I don’t really focus about. I can get easy baskets. I’m trying to be aggressive when I get the ball to attack the basket. Guys like (Karl-Anthony) Towns and (Joel) Embiid, they don’t have the best field goal percentage because they are always aggressive. For me, it’s not a goal to be first; it’s to be aggressive when I have the ball and do what I do.”


Late in the fourth quarter, Capela fought Kyle Kuzma for a rebound, and then side-stepped around Julius Randle for a smooth finish. Despite his offensive struggles, Capela is happy that he continued to pursue loose balls and look to score, via Jonathan Feigen.

“That’s the mindset I want to have. When I grab an offensive rebound, I want to stay aggressive, go to the rim, go through the contact to be able to finish. I want to have the mindset to be aggressive and not just wait for easy baskets.”

Clint Capela is averaging 18.8 points, 15.9 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per 36 minutes, which would easily earn him a spot at the All-Star game. For Capela, his next step will be the ability to play big minutes without showing a decline in effectiveness. Houston would benefit from having Capela on the floor for 30 or more minutes a night.

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Capela, at 6’10” and 240 pounds, is a bit undersized against some of the bigger centers in the league. Houston faces Rudy Gobert and the Utah Jazz on Thursday. It’ll be interesting to see if Capela can remain effective against arguably the best defensive center in the NBA.