The Houston Rockets hit the court for the first time since April with a come-from-behind 100-99 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Friday. The game had several highlights, including a game-winning buzzer-beater from Rockets second-year forward Jabari Smith Jr. and Smith's overall play in general, as he finished with 33 points after a dismal four points in the first half.
The Rockets also received a strong showing from second-year forward Tari Eason, who finished with 20 points, 10 rebounds, and five assists. But let's face it- the focus of the game was the matchup between Scoot Henderson and Amen Thompson, the respective third and fourth-overall picks in the 2023 NBA Draft.
Henderson had 15 points, 6 assists, and 5 rebounds, while shooting 5-of-13 from the field and 1-of-3 from long range, before exiting the game in the third quarter due to a shoulder injury. Thompson also suffered an injury of his own, albeit at the very end of the game, meaning fans were essentially able to see him play the entirety of the game.
Thompson posted a gaudy all-around statline, and left Rockets Twitter in awe.
Thompson had 16 points on 6-of-13 from the floor, five assists, four rebounds, four blocks (yes, you read that right) and three steals. In addition, Thompson made his only 3-pointer, which is understandably the greatest concern surrounding his game.
Offensively, Thompson's playmaking was on display, as he threw one-handed ropes to Rockets players and displayed the ability to be the offensive engine that the Rockets have been lacking for the last several years.
Thompson also had flashy, creative finishes around the basket, and even changed hands from right to left after leaving his feet several times (a move he flashed throughout his tenure in the Overtime Elite).
Thompson was putting in work on both ends
On defense, Thompson was a problem for the Blazers. He used his 6'7 frame to switch onto bigger players and was very active all over the floor.
All in all, Thompson was flat out hooping. As previously noted, Thompson suffered an ankle injury late in the game and the Rockets are reportedly shutting him down for the remainder of the Summer League, so we'll have to wait until training camp and the preseason to see him take the court again.
But based on his Summer League debut, we'll be in for a treat whenever he does step on the floor again.