Free Agency

Houston Rockets: 3 reasons letting Kelly Olynyk go was smart

N.B. Lindberg
Los Angeles Clippers v Houston Rockets
Los Angeles Clippers v Houston Rockets / Carmen Mandato/Getty Images
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Kelly Olynyk, John Wall, Houston Rockets
Indiana Pacers v Houston Rockets / Carmen Mandato/Getty Images

Houston Rockets: Reason #1 letting Kelly Olynyk go was smart: Price 

As mentioned before, Kelly Olynyk landed himself a nice little contract. Three-years, $37 million for a career backup with limited defensive impact is nothing to sneeze at. The Rockets were right to be put off by a price tag that large, especially when they have Christian Wood making just a smidge more. 

The Rockets drafting Alperun Sengun and Usman Garuba also made not paying the sticker price for Olynyk a lot easier. Their frontcourt is populated by good young players on team-friendly deals. Why add an older player at what might be an overpay?

In a salary cap sport, even one that is as flexible as the NBA’s, contracts are everything. Paying Olynyk $12.3 million a season just doesn’t make much sense for the Rockets. With Daniel Theis, a more versatile center, available for only $9 million a season the Rockets made the right choice. 

dark. Next. Grading the Daniel Theis and David Nwaba signings

If the Rockets had re-signed Olynyk, they would have $30.6 million committed just to their frontcourt. If Olynyk perfectly complemented Christian Wood it would be a different story but he remains a less good regurgitated sequel. And like every lazily assembled sequel, it costs more than the original and makes less money.