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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Tracy McGrady #3 of the Houston Rockets. Copyright 2009 NBAE (Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images)
Tracy McGrady #3 of the Houston Rockets. Copyright 2009 NBAE (Photo by Fernando Medina/NBAE via Getty Images) /

169. . . Guard/Forward. Tracy McGrady. 9


  • Six seasons with the Rockets (2004-09)

  • Averaged 22.7 points, 5.7 assists, and 5.6 rebounds per game

  • 3x All-Star with the Rockets

Tracy McGrady was drafted straight out of high school with the No. 9 pick in the 1997 NBA Draft by the Toronto Raptors. He suited up for the Raptors with his cousin, Vince Carter, and didn’t contribute much during his first two NBA seasons. He was, after all, still a teenager.

But during the 1999-2000 campaign, McGrady began to break out.

He averaged 15.4 points in 31.2 minutes per game as he began to work his way into the starting lineup. But then, he was traded down to the Orlando Magic in exchange for a first-round draft pick, and the Raptors have been kicking themselves ever since.

In his first season in Orlando, McGrady averaged 26.8 points per game and made his first All-Star Game. He made four-straight All-Star appearances as a member of the Magic, including leading the entire league in scoring in 2002-03 and 2003-04.

McGrady was sent to Houston in the aforementioned Steve Francis deal prior to the 2004-05 season. Once with the Rockets, McGrady went back to his scoring ways, averaging exactly 25 points per game over his first three seasons in Houston — all All-Star appearances.

Oh, yeah, and remember that one time he did this?

The McGrady Rockets teams were unfortunately limited by injuries to Yao Ming, among others, but were still fun teams to watch and consistently competitive. They went to the playoffs three times, only to lose in the first round all three times.

McGrady was traded to the New York Knicks in 2010, where he played 24 games to close out the year. Then, one season with the Detroit Pistons and one season with the Atlanta Hawks, by which time he had molded himself into a useful role player, shooting 45.5 percent on 3-point attempts in his final season in the league.

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