4. Jae’Sean Tate
Tate is a quality role player, but his minutes have decreased in each of his four seasons with the Rockets. He is averaging just 17.6 minutes per game this season and producing the worst stat line of his career. He played 29 a night as a rookie, but that run isn’t returning unless he heads to a new team.
It speaks more to the talent on the Rockets roster than Tate’s play. Houston wants to develop their youngsters and win games. That means massive minutes for Fred VanVleet and plenty of run for their recent high lottery selections.
Tate is in his prime and the undersized forward can guard multiple positions. His jumper is improving but below average. Still, he offers some playmaking, rebounding, and defense. Contending teams will be interested if the Rockets make him available. His $6.5 million salary could help Houston get an expensive piece and open up more playing time for Tate in a new city.
The Rockets would like to keep Jae’Sean Tate, but they do not have significant minutes to give him. The 28-year-old may be on a new team before the Feb. 8 trade deadline, and it could be the best solution for both him and the Houston Rockets moving forward.