The Houston Rockets were able to get rid of the bad Ryan Anderson contract this summer. In the process, they also might have found their backup center of the future.
Both of the new additions will be fighting for some reserve minutes on a team that was one win away from the NBA Finals a season ago. Chriss, in particular, will be looking to take hold of the backup center position behind Clint Capela after playing power forward for most of his career.
Now, in Houston, Chriss can adjust to the style of play that the Rockets have. The team loves to play small and he is the perfect candidate for a small ball center.
He also appears to pretty much have the job over the veteran Nene. Jonathan Feigen tweeted this out yesterday:
Rockets center Marquese Chriss sat out Wednesday's scrimmage with a strained hip, but good to go today. Valuable time for him to adjust to a different, but well-defined role behind Capela.
— Jonathan Feigen (@Jonathan_Feigen) September 28, 2018
Chriss at backup center
One question going into the offseason was whether or not the Rockets can find a younger upgrade from Nene. Nene is a great veteran to have on the team and can still play at times, but overall the team needed to look for someone not quite as old.
Isaiah Hartenstein or Zhou Qi were previously candidates for the gig before the trade went down last month. Marquese Chriss, though, has more experience and can fit the system of the Rockets perfectly. He’s an athletic big who can catch alley-oops and has shown flashes of even shooting from deep. That’s why he should fit perfectly with the team and why he should be the backup center.