7. Similarity to superteam Warriors’ playing style
What’s gotten lost in the shuffle during the Rockets’ switch to small ball has been how the super team Golden State Warriors played a similar style and won two championships. The Warriors had five players who could shoot the trey, and they turned to Draymond Green to play center, much similar to the strategy the Houston Rockets have employed.
Perkins had the below to say about the Rockets similarities to the Warriors:
“Well it’s the same thing, you just have different scorers. You had Steph, Klay and KD and now you’ve got Russ and James. And Russ is probably the most athletic point guard in NBA history. And then you have James Harden, who is averaging 36 points per game. It’s right there with Golden State.
The only concern I have is whether PJ Tucker and Robert Covington can anchor a defense like Draymond Green could. Because what alot of people don’t understand is that Draymond Green played the five in college so him transitioning to an undersized five in the league wasn’t new to him.
But [I know] old school PJ Tucker is a rugged player who is going to lay it all on the line.”
Perkins makes an interesting point, as the Warriors were able to play their infamous “Death Lineup” because of Green’s previous experience playing center. Tucker obviously isn’t used to playing center, but there are advantages of playing him in such a role.
Granted, Tucker isn’t nearly the passer Green is, but he brings the same level of defensive tenacity and he also can shoot the trey better, which matters in Mike D’Antoni‘s offense. Regarding the defense, Perkins is right about how Tucker will lay it all on the line, but the combination of Tucker and Covington is a defensive nightmare for anyone.
Next: Lockdown defense