With the way the lottery odds are set up, the top 3 teams will have the same odds at the number one overall pick as well as having a Top 4 pick.
The Houston Rockets flat out suck, and there’s no other way around it. Since the start of their losing streak, which began on February 6th, the Houston Rockets rank last in offensive rating at 99.7.
There is a huge gap between them and the next worst team, the Orlando Magic, who possess a 105.2 offensive rating. On the other side of the ball, the Rockets are the fifth-worst team in the league for defensive rating during that timeframe.
The Houston Rockets had won 7 of 8 games prior to the start of their losing streak and during this period by contrast, the team was 19th in offensive rating and first in defensive rating! Talk about two tales of one city.
Houston is far from the best version of themselves and while offense has always been an issue with this team during the season, it has become evident that the absence of Christian Wood is a large reason why this team is struggling heavily. With Wood planning on returning to action after the All Star break, it allows the team to rest for an extended period of time to allow players such as Wood, Victor Oladipo, and Eric Gordon, who have been dealing with minor but nagging injuries to get healthy again.
While we know this streak won’t last forever, Rockets ownership and management need to ponder whether it is in the franchise’s best interest to try and improve their record.
3 players the Houston Rockets should consider in the 2021 NBA Draft
During their win streak earlier this season where the team won six in a row, they were one of the best defensive teams in the league. With the way the lottery odds are set up, the top-three teams will have the same odds at the number one overall pick as well as having a top-four pick.
With a 14 percent chance at selecting first, the Houston Rockets will have an opportunity to launch a rebuild after the James Harden era came to an abrupt end earlier this season. More importantly than the number one pick, the Rockets are more likely than not to have a top-four pick, which is critical for their future, given the swap protections made with OKC when they traded Chris Paul for Westbrook.
They have a 52.1 percent chance at a top-four pick, and it is critical they aim for a selection in this range, considering the franchise can end up falling significantly lower with the success the Miami Heat has been having recently. OKC will guarantee themselves two of the most favorable picks with Houston, Miami and their own pick, unless Houston’s pick falls in the top four.
Miami is currently the hottest team in the league and with the return of Jimmy Butler, it is safe to assume Houston’s best option is to tank in order to avoid draft catastrophe. The 2021 NBA Draft has the potential to allow Houston to address one of the many holes on their roster.
Assuming the team has a top-four pick after this season, here is an ordered list on who they should prioritize drafting, based on talent availability and team needs.
Next: 3rd Overall Pick