Houston Rockets target #1: Jaden Springer, Point Guard/Shooting Guard, Tennessee
Jaden Springer is a combo guard who can play both the point guard and shooting guard position. He is a 6’4″ 204 pound freshman at Tennessee and will be drafted before he turns 19-years-old.
While the small forward position is a hole needed to be filled for the Houston Rockets, the franchise can elect to go in another direction if they decide to go with a combo guard who can be the successor to John Wall once he moves on from his contract with the Houston Rockets.
Jaden Springer is a 3-level scoring threat. He can attack the basket, has the ability to shoot mid-range jump shots and is shooting 54.2 percent from beyond the arc.
His stats on the season thus far are 11.7 points,2.5 assists and 3.3 rebounds per game, while playing just 23.3 minutes per game. Springer is not afraid to play through contact, as he possesses an aggressive mindset. His strength and balance allows him to play physical and attack the rim off the dribble.
Springer can also play off-the-ball, which is an invaluable skill for guards to have in today’s league. A current NBA player that he gets compared to is Kyle Lowry. Both are tough and gritty guards who can play on and off-the-ball.
Another strength is his defense. He is considered a solid perimeter defender who can put pressure and is able to stick on his opponent. Lastly, he has a respectable playmaking ability that will allow him to get his teammates involved.
Weaknesses of Jaden Springer
Some weaknesses of Jaden Springer are that despite him being a 54.2 percent 3-point shooter, he is shooting them at a very low volume. Thus, his true average remains to be seen when he enters the league.
Another area of weakness for Springer is his foul trouble. Due to being an aggressive and gritty player, Springer can find himself in early foul trouble. This would need to improve at the pro level if he wants to find himself playing heavier minutes for a franchise.
Another weakness of Springer is his assist to turnover ratio. Per 36 minutes, he is averaging 3.9 assists and 3.6 turnovers per game. As a guard, this metric needs to be much higher in order to be taken more seriously.
The Houston Rockets are in an unusual predicament considering if they elect to tank this season, they would need to ensure that they are in the bottom-four of the standings to maximize their chances to have that swap with the Thunder voided.
The Miami Heat are expected to make the playoffs, and the Thunder are not looking like a serious threat to make the playoffs this year. We can probably expect this team to end up drafting outside the top-14, barring unusual circumstances that cause the Heat to miss the playoffs this year.
As the season continues to progress, we will look to update what prospects will likely be available at their position at a future point of time.