The Dream starting 5 for the Rockets 5 years from now

Does Rockets young talent blossom in 5 years?
Houston Rockets, Jabari Smith Jr.
Houston Rockets, Jabari Smith Jr. / Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports
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SF: Mikal Bridges

The Rockets have a ton of young talent, but they need a connector that vaults them into contention. Houston will have a unique opportunity in a few years. Players are undervalued on their rookie contracts and the salary cap is exploding. The Rockets will have money to spend and could land a star to top their roster.

Fred VanVleet signed a three-year max contract this summer, but he will be 32 years old in 2026, assuming the Rockets pick up their club option. Houston could look to move, especially if Amen Thompson has become their preferred ball-handler. They will have re-signed Green but he is unlikely to get a maximum offer. That will leave Houston with money to spend in free agency.

Bridges is an unrestricted free agent in the summer of 2026 unless he signs an extension. The 6’6 wing ties the Rockets' defense together and makes them a scary team on both ends of the floor. He will have just turned 32 in 2028 and should be at the back end of his prime.

Mikal Bridges transformed into a superstar after arriving in Brooklyn and his ability to play several different roles is massive in Space City. The Houston Rockets can become a versatile team with multiple ways to win games. Bridges is the perfect fit, and someone the franchise should attempt to acquire, especially if some of their young talent has blossomed into stars. He can space the floor, score, handle the ball, make plays, defend multiple positions, and fill whatever role the Rockets need that night.