After failing to land the first overall pick in the 2021 and 2022 NBA Draft, the Houston Rockets hoped the basketball gods would reverse their misfortunes in past years, heading into Tuesday's draft lottery. The Rockets landed the fourth overall pick in the 2023 NBA Draft, putting an end to all prayers for Victor Wembanyama, who will surely be going first overall to the San Antonio Spurs.
The Rockets could still walk away with the second-best player in the draft class, who is unequivocally point guard Scoot Henderson of the G-League Ignite. Henderson is one of the better prospects in recent memory and would be the talk of the draft were it not for Wembanyama, who is viewed as a generational talent and possibly the best player to enter the draft since LeBron James (certainly the most hyped).
Although the Rockets may hold their heads low after missing out on the ability to land Wemby, they should be quite satisfied with the actual draft order, as the Charlotte Hornets and Portland Trail Blazers select second and third, both of which don't need point guards. This, along with the fact that the Rockets are drafting fourth (just two spots behind where Henderson has been projected to land), could make it easy to trade up to get the 19-year-old Henderson.
And especially considering the recent history of teams that made draft-day trades to move up in the draft, which should give the Rockets encouragement on that front. Let's revisit the most recent ones..