1. Marcus Smart
The most obvious player the Rockets should target from the Grizzlies is Marcus Smart, who is a tough defender on the perimeter. Smart won Defensive Player of the Year in 2021-22 and is a three-time First Team All-Defensive selection.
Not to mention the fact that Smart and Rockets coach Ime Udoka have a prior working relationship, stemming from Udoka's brief stint as head coach in Boston (which happens to be the same season that Smart won DPOY).
Smart was elated when Udoka got hired by the Rockets over the summer.
“Happy for him,” Smart said. “He’s a great coach. Obviously we wish he could’ve been here with us, but we understand the business side of everything and everything that happened. So it’s just good to see him back out there getting at least another opportunity to show his wisdom and what he has to bring to the game.”
Smart spoke of the great connection and friendship that he and Udoka have formed.
"We built a connection together outside of basketball, me and Ime. So for him not to be here was tough, but I’m just happy for him and happy he gets another opportunity to show what he can do.”
Smart can operate as a playmaking guard off the bench, who can clamp opponents down defensively. Granted, his shooting has been down (30.2 percent from long-range), but he'd be a valuable acquisition for this Rockets team.