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 Shane Battier (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Houston Rockets Shane Battier (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /

. Guard/Forward. Shane Battier. 16. 169.


  • Five seasons with the Rockets (2006-11)

  • Averaged 8.8 points and 4.7 rebounds per game

Yep, a guy who averaged just 8.8 points and 4.7 rebounds per game vaulted over a few recognizable names on this list and landed himself at No. 16.

A huge part of this ranking was the unbelievable rate at which he made his 3-point attempts while in a Rockets uniform, ranging from 36.2 percent in 2009-10 (his worst year in Houston) to 42.1 percent in 2006-07.

Shane Battier practically revolutionized the way that the corner 3-point attempt was thought of, plus he helped to define the idea of a “3-and-D” wing player.

Battier shot 48.3 percent of his 3-point shot attempts from the corners, converting on 42.1 percent of them. He was also a fantastic defender and an extremely cerebral player, fitting into the team’s concept perfectly on both ends of the floor.

The 2006-07 Rockets won 52 games under Jeff Van Gundy and lost a first-round heartbreaker in seven games to the Utah Jazz. Then, 55 wins and a first-round playoff exit under Rick Adelman.

The following year, Adelman got the team to the second round before they lost to the Los Angeles Lakers in seven games. The team missed the playoffs in 2009-10, Battier’s last full season in a Rockets uniform.

He was traded back to the Memphis Grizzlies, where he had spent the first five years of his career, at the 2011 NBA trade deadline. Battier followed his stint back with the Grizzlies with three seasons on the Miami Heat, including back-to-back rings alongside LeBron James.

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