Rockets News

3 reasons the Houston Rockets shouldn’t trade for Russell Westbrook

By Dan Crouch
HOUSTON, TX - FEBRUARY 09: Chris Paul #3 of the Houston Rockets drives to the basket defended by Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder in the first half at Toyota Center on February 9, 2019 in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX - FEBRUARY 09: Chris Paul #3 of the Houston Rockets drives to the basket defended by Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder in the first half at Toyota Center on February 9, 2019 in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit
Prev
2 of 4
Next
HOUSTON, TX – FEBRUARY 9: Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder handles the ball against Iman Shumpert #1 of the Houston Rockets on February 9, 2019 at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX – FEBRUARY 9: Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder handles the ball against Iman Shumpert #1 of the Houston Rockets on February 9, 2019 at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Awful shooting

This doesn’t take a rocket scientist or even a Houston Rockets analytic scientist. Houston’s offense relies on their three-point shooting, which isn’t a strength of Westbrook’s. Being a bad 3-point shooter doesn’t definitively mean he’s a bad fit for the Rockets, but being a bad 3-point shooter and still shooting more than five threes per game does.

Per basketball reference, Westbrook shot 30.9% on 5.1 three-point attempts per game over the last five seasons. Since his MVP season, he has dropped to 29.3% on 4.8 attempts per game, including ranking last among 130 qualifying players last season with 29%. His 48.3% shooting from two-point range and 70.1% clip from the free throw line last season are equally unappealing for the Rockets’ game style.

Westbrook has never shot better than 35% from 3-point range, and he has shot worse than 30% in six of his eleven NBA seasons. Houston would have to entirely restructure a system which works to accommodate Westbrook’s erratic play style and undesirable shot selection.

There’s a lot to like about Westbrook, but his shooting percentages alone should be enough to scare Morey away.

Next: Locker room

facebooktwitterreddit