1. Chip Engelland
This name is one Rockets’ fans might not be familiar with, but Chip Engelland is simply the best shooting coach the league has seen in decades. Molding the shots of guys like Shane Battier at Duke early on, Engelland became a big part of the San Antonio Spurs’ later title runs after joining the team.
In a 2014 profile for Grantland, Bill Barnwell spoke about Engelland’s accomplishments as a player and coach. Engelland himself was a remarkable shooter as a player, shooting 55.4 percent from downtown in his senior year at Duke.
More from Space City Scoop
- Houston Rockets: Why Cade Cunningham isn’t a lock at no. 1 in NBA Draft
- Houston Rockets: 3 trades of Christian Wood to the Golden State Warriors
- 3 reason why the Houston Rockets should draft Jalen Green
- NBA Draft: Should Houston Rockets select Evan Mobley or Jalen Green?
- Houston Rockets: 2 Pros and cons to trading back in NBA Draft
When Engelland went out to dinner with Steve Kerr during the 1993-94 season, he gave him pointers on how to improve his already picture-perfect shot.
“It was very subtle,” Kerr said. “But before I started working with [Chip], the ball rolled more off my middle finger than my index finger.”
“Engelland is capable of seeing things in a shooter’s motion that even Kerr, the league’s most accurate 3-point shooter ever, wouldn’t notice,” said Barnwell in his profile.
Chip then became the man that could turn any man’s jumper into a serious weapon, even guys that didn’t possess a great shot before entering the NBA, such as Tony Parker and Kawhi Leonard.
Knowing his value to the San Antonio Spurs, it makes sense that he’s been an assistant coach for them since 2005.
It’s likely just a pipe dream that the Rockets could poach Engelland away from the Spurs, but in any wishlist about shooting, he’s undoubtedly choice number one.