Alas, Houston Rockets basketball is finally back. Six months since their season-finale against the Washington Wizards, the Rockets will square off against the Indiana Pacers in their preseason opener on Tuesday.
Both teams are hoping to turn the corner in 2023-24, which will make the matchup even more intriguing, as both teams are essentially in the same state of contention (at least if you ask the producers of NBA 2K24).
The Rockets have made drastic changes since they last took the court, as they are an entirely different team. In fact, the Rockets only have seven players remaining from the 2022-23 roster- Tari Eason, Alperen Sengun, Jalen Green, Jae'Sean Tate, Jabari Smith Jr., Boban Marjanovic, and Trevor Hudgins.
Head coach Ime Udoka will have 20 players available at his disposal and he figures to utilize all of them. The debuts of Fred VanVleet and Dillon Brooks will be the headline act for Houston, with many across the league awaiting to see how the veterans fit in with the team.
3 aspects to watch for in Houston Rockets preseason opener vs. Pacers
The Rockets will also unveil recent draftees Amen Thompson and Cam Whitmore, both of whom showed promise in the Summer League, and especially the latter, who took home the Summer League MVP trophy.
Granted, it's not wise to read too much into the preseason, however, several factors could signal promise in the early analysis of phase two of the Rockets' rebuild.
Let’s have a look at three aspects to watch for in the preseason opener against the Pacers.