Why the Houston Rockets should select Jalen Suggs third overall
At the moment, if the season ended today Houston possesses the third-worst record in the league. However, the odds of drafting 1st-3rd are the same.
So, if they end up drafting third it is likely that the Detroit Pistons and Minnesota Timberwolves are ahead of them, given their odds are identical to Houston’s. The Rockets would likely end up drafting a guard or a small forward, given who will likely be available at their disposal.
With Kevin Porter Jr’s potential and Christian Wood showing flashes of being an All-Star, this leaves three roster spots to fill. At number three, Houston should draft Jalen Suggs, a combo guard from Gonzaga.
At 6’4”, Suggs will declare for the draft after finishing his freshman year with the Bulldogs. In per 36 metrics, Suggs is averaging 18.1 points, 7.1 rebounds and 6 assists with an impressive 2.6 steals per game.
With Cade Cunningham projected to go first overall, Suggs is close behind him to be considered the top 2021-point guard in the upcoming draft class.
Suggs has been extremely efficient in his freshman year. With about 10 shot attempts per game, Suggs is shooting 51 percent from the field and more importantly 59 percent true shooting field goal percentage.
In addition to being a solid offensive player, Suggs provides a well-rounded profile with his defensive presence on the floor. As mentioned earlier, Suggs is averaging 2.6 steals per game and has an 88.6 defensive rating.
The Houston Rockets will need a successor to John Wall, given his age and injury history. Despite Wall having a good season in a Rockets uniform, he does not fit the Houston Rockets timeline nor their plans for a rebuild.
With the league saturated with guards, Houston will possibly have a tough time moving on from Wall in the offseason if they draft Suggs. However, they can always take the approach that the Hornets have done this season with Lamelo Ball by bringing him off the bench initially and learning from Wall as a mentor.
While Suggs has plenty of attributes to boast about, he does have a couple of weaknesses that he needs to improve on. The first area of weakness is his assist-to-turnover ratio.
Suggs has a 1.6 ratio which he needs to improve on when he enters the league. Suggs will be tasked as the primary ball handler for the Rockets, and in this role he needs to decrease the amount of times he is turning the ball over.
Another weakness of Suggs is his 3-point shooting. His projected NBA 3-point percentage is just under 35 percent on approximately four attempts per game.
The low volume of 3’s along with that accuracy needs to be improved in order for his offense to grow.
Next: 2nd Overall Pick