Rockets News

Houston Rockets: 3 reasons why Kevin Porter Jr can be the next James Harden

Kevin Porter Jr. #4 of the Cleveland Cavaliers (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Kevin Porter Jr. #4 of the Cleveland Cavaliers (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
facebooktwitterreddit
3 of 4
Kevin Love #0 talks with Kevin Porter Jr. #4 of the Cleveland Cavaliers (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Kevin Love #0 talks with Kevin Porter Jr. #4 of the Cleveland Cavaliers (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

Houston Rockets: Kevin Porter’s versatility

In his first and only season with the Cleveland Cavaliers, Porter played second fiddle to Collin Sexton, who was the team’s primary ballhandler and first option. However, this did not stop veteran teammates like Kevin Love from recognizing his talent.

On the Road Trippin podcast which is hosted by former NBA players, Richard Jefferson and Channing Frye, Kevin Love was a guest star in an episode earlier this month in which he had high praise for his teammate.

“If you look at our entire team and you take Kevin Porter Jr and you stack him up, he was by far the most talented guy we had on our roster.”

Love goes on to list several attributes that Porter possesses which are similar to what makes James Harden such a great player in this league. “He can rebound the basketball, can really pass, get his own shot, finish at the rim, body control and shoulders. He’s just so good. He has the ability to be a real star in this league,” Love explained.

"Kevin Porter, Jr. was BY FAR the most talented player on our roster"

Kevin Love on KPJ pic.twitter.com/8c00KeT0bU

— Rob Kimbell (@RobKSports) February 15, 2021

In his six games with the Vipers this season, Houston Rockets fans were eager to pay close attention to Kevin Porter Jr. despite the disappointing start for the Vipers. Porter has kept fans tuned in as they were able to finally see his game on display.

In a contest against the Austin Spurs, with time winding down in the quarter, Porter shows his offensive versatility.  He is patient and takes advantage of a smaller opponent by not settling for a three-point shot.

KEVIN PORTER JR, WHAT A BEAUTIFUL SPIN MOVE AND SCORE TO END THE FIRST QUARTER!

Vipers lead 26-24 pic.twitter.com/pko6jHYrOV

— Disney Gary Clark (@Itamar1710) February 18, 2021

Instead of stepping back for what would have been a contested shot,  Porter sells a pump fake and puts his head down for a drive towards the basket. With the help defender there on the baseline, he is able to spin and create enough space to finish a layup with his non-shooting hand.

Similar to Harden, Porter protects the ball against the defender after the spin move by keeping it low which oftentimes gets the defender to stick their hand out for a reach-in call. It’s a move Rockets fans have seen made by Harden a million times.

Another area of Porter’s game that Love spoke glowingly about was his passing and this was again on display against the Austin Spurs. Porter waited for Wooten to set a screen to get his teammate open on the three-point line and subsequently waited for a backdoor screen by another teammate on his defender to get the alley-oop dunk.

.@Kevinporterjr finds his guy @kennywootenjr pic.twitter.com/SJVMIMDFcI

— NBA G League (@nbagleague) February 18, 2021

This action is very similar to what Harden would do on offense for Clint Capela, many times leading to an easy basket. Porter’s ability to score and pass has shades of James Harden and should have Rockets fans very excited for his debut.

Next: No. 1

facebooktwitterreddit