Houston Rockets: 30 Greatest players in franchise history

By Ben Beecken
Houston Rockets Hakeem Olajuwon, Kenny Smith, Robert Horry, Vernon Maxwell, Otis Thorpe (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images)
Houston Rockets Hakeem Olajuwon, Kenny Smith, Robert Horry, Vernon Maxwell, Otis Thorpe (Photo by Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Houston Rockets Luis Scola (Photo by Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images)
Houston Rockets Luis Scola (Photo by Glenn James/NBAE via Getty Images) /

169. . . Power Forward. Luis Scola. 20


  • Five seasons with the Rockets (2007-12)

  • Averaged 14.5 points and 7.7 rebounds per game

Luis Scola is a bit of a sneaky pick at No. 20, but Rockets fans know just how much he brought to the team for his relatively short stint in red.

Scola was a late second-round pick by the San Antonio Spurs back in 2002. He didn’t come stateside until 2007. Just prior to his arrival, his rights were traded to the Rockets.

Scola was already 27 years old and was able to step in as a key rotation player for Rick Adelman’s 55-win team right away. The Rockets lost in six games to the Utah Jazz in the first round of the playoffs, but Scola’s rookie season saw him average 10.3 points and 6.4 rebounds per game.

By year two, Scola was a starter. In fact, he started every game for the Rockets in both 2008-09 and 2009-10. Then, he started 74 games the following year and all 66 games in the lockout-shortened 2011-12 campaign.

His peak was 18.3 points and 8.2 rebounds in 2010-11, his age-30 season. That Rockets team went 43-39 under Adelman and missed the playoffs, sealing the former Sacramento Kings’ coach’s fate in Houston.

Scola went on to play one year with the Phoenix Suns, two with the Indiana Pacers, one with the Toronto Raptors and 36 games with the Brooklyn Nets as a 36-year-old in 2016-17 before heading to China, where he still plays today.

Scola was always an undersized power forward who was a good enough rebounder and defender for his size to stay on the floor. He was skilled offensively and a great passer, and is one of the better Rockets power forwards in recent memory.

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