Why Mason Jones is in line to become the Rockets’ next star

Mason Jones #9 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images)
Mason Jones #9 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images) /
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Houston Rockets
Mason Jones #15 of the Arkansas Razorbacks (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images) /

The positives in Jones’ game

Jones has several positives in his game, with the first of which being his ability to handle the ball.

So far he has shown himself to be a rather effective ball-handler, as he is able to maneuver his way around the floor while maintaining enough control to be effective on offense. He demonstrated Saturday night that he can additionally suffice at the point-guard spot when needed, already looking relatively comfortable running plays.

While he did rack up six turnovers, this game against the Spurs is too small a sample size to determine that this is a consistent issue he will experience. Unless he continues to turn the ball over at a high rate with more playing time, it cannot yet be called a flaw in his game.

Arguably his most impressive and impactful attribute is his ability to score from a variety of spots on the floor. So far, the Rockets have seen Jones score from deep, from mid-range, and in the paint via drives.

Several of his threes notably come from multiple feet behind the arc. Players who can do this consistently possess an advantageous level of gravity and floor-spacing, since opponents are forced to take them seriously at very long distances from the rim the space they create through the threat of their shot has cascading benefits for the entire offense.

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The shooting splits he achieved against the Spurs on Saturday night are obviously not sustainable, especially if he has earned his way to more playing time in the eyes of Stephen Silas. But at least so far, he has shown that he can be an efficient and productive scorer and deserves the opportunity to continue proving that.

None of this is to say that Jones is going to reach All-Star heights, because clearly, it is far too early with far too small a sample size to be making any predictions like that. He likely will not receive quite enough playing time to put up those kinds of numbers on a consistent basis either, but that level of potential is not the only thing that makes Jones such a steal for the Rockets.

Next: The real value Jones brings