Why the Houston Rockets are still struggling with rebounding

DeMarcus Cousins #15 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)
DeMarcus Cousins #15 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images) /
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Houston Rockets
General Manager Neil Olshey of the Portland Trail Blazers speaks with General Manager Rafael Stone of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /

2. Rockets’ roster construction

There are several reasons for these struggles, but not amongst them are Christian Wood and DeMarcus Cousins themselves. Wood is averaging nearly 10 rebounds a game and DeMarcus Cousins is hovering a little under six boards a game, which is decent considering how many minutes he is getting.

While those rebounding averages are not eye-popping, they are also not sufficient to use as a cause for the Rockets’ rebounding issues. These struggles come down to the Rockets’ other personnel.

The problem is partially an issue of roster construction, but also partially an issue of team performance. Obviously, one of these can be addressed more immediately and easily than the other.

Despite Cousins and Wood being on the team, the Rockets are still not a particularly tall team. Bruno Caboclo is 6’9, but receives minimal playing time, and the same is true of Kenyon Martin Jr., who is 6’7.

After those two, everyone else on the Rockets outside of the centers is 6’6 (Danuel House Jr.) or below. In the past, the Rockets have had some lengthier wings to make up for this in Trevor Ariza, Luc Mbah a Moute, and Robert Covington.

In 2021 however, the Rockets are lacking a lot of length outside of their two centers. This is making it challenging for them to compete on the boards with teams who have several lengthy wing players.

Next: Reason #1