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3 early impressions of Rockets forward Robert Covington

Houston Rockets Robert Covington (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
Houston Rockets Robert Covington (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)
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Houston Rockets
Houston Rockets Robert Covington (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

3. RoCo worth more than the asking price

One of the early criticisms the Rockets faced when they traded for Covington was they gave up too much for RoCo’s services. After all, they did give up the best piece in the trade, as they parted with a 25-year-old center who was under contract long-term. Not to mention the fact that Capela was in his prime.

Many questioned Rockets general manager Daryl Morey’s vision for the future, which is valid. But Morey was sending a clear message: he was going all in to win a championship this season. The Rockets window is short but their opportunity to accomplish this goal is greater this season with no clear super team in sight.

Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta echoed the same sentiments recently, as he said the Rockets aren’t worried about any of the Western Conference teams. But beyond all of this, the Rockets clearly won this trade because of the role they’ve asked Covington to play and how well he’s played it.

The Rockets have essentially landed the best shot-blocker who also has allowed them to spread the floor, which has allowed Russell Westbrook to operate in the paint with as much space as necessary.

This is a perfect example of how much small ball improves the spacing for Russ.

He's got a big man defending him and nothing else between him and the rim. pic.twitter.com/ZYdyp5m35L

— Space City Scoop (@SpaceCity_Scoop) February 27, 2020

The Rockets have used Covington as a jack of all trades type of forward, as he’s been their leading shot blocker and their free safety on defense. Covington has the ability to switch and defend guards, forwards or centers, which is not something they’ve ever had.

On top of that, Covington has averaged 6.9 rebounds per game, which has been second to only Russell Westbrook, who we know is the greatest rebounding guard in league history. It goes without saying but there aren’t many players in the league who possess this unique jack of all trades ability. When you factor in the multi-faceted role Covington is able to play it’s clear that the asking price should have been significantly higher.

Next: No. 2

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