The Houston Rockets have gone 7-6 since acquiring Robert Covington, which is far from encouraging. Although that’s not entirely on Covington, it’s not a good enough record to draw confidence in the microball strategy.
Perhaps the better statistic is the Rockets’ record without Capela this season, which is now 17-7. Although that sounds great, it would actually be 21-3 if the Rockets had turned those four recent losses into wins, but that’s neither here nor there.
Morey explained his feelings on how the Rockets have played without having a traditional center in the lineup.
“We’re thrilled. Obviously we wish we were 12-2, I think we’re 10-4 now since not playing with Clint. I think our job is obviously to get great players, get superstars. Hopefully, probably at least two to win the title, and maybe more, but we have two. And then find the right fits around them.
The overwhelming question that was raised upon the Rockets’ acquiring Russell Westbrook was simple: how would it work offensively? Russell can’t shoot 3-pointers and he thrives at driving to the basket, due to his unprecedented athletic ability for a point guard.
But how would that work with a traditional center clogging the paint? The Rockets realized it wouldn’t work, which is why they devised this schematic change midseason.
We feel with James and Russell, probably even a little more with Russell is what we’ve learned, having spacing and shooting and driving lanes….if you’re going to win with those two guys, I think that’s the best way to play.”
The experiment has gotten MVP-level play out of Russell Westbrook, but it presents a bit of a challenge for Harden, as he’s always thrived off having a lob option, which the Rockets obviously don’t have in their starting lineup. Granted, this could change with the insertion of Jeff Green in the starting lineup, but we’ve not seen Houston Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni make that adjustment yet.
Next: Russ/CP3 Trade