Rockets veteran in competition during the 2022 season

Houston Rockets v Brooklyn Nets
Houston Rockets v Brooklyn Nets / Sarah Stier/GettyImages

Jae'Sean Tate was paid by the Rockets and looks like a starter for the 2022 season, but Tari Eason is hot on the trail and already starting to turn heads.

The Houston Rockets are in a full-on rebuild as they head into the early stages of the 2022 NBA season. There is no way around it.

This team is going to struggle, as do most teams in similar positions.

The old guys are out or on their way out the door. The young guys are the focal points now. The Rockets are going to focus on bringing in as many talented young guys as they can while also working to cultivate their talents into a starting five that can contend with the best of teams in the playoffs.

Still, this process takes time, and the Rockets did decide to keep one veteran outside of Eric Gordon that they weren't forced to.

Houston made a clear choice to pay and keep Jae'Sean Tate. They had an out and didn't choose to use it. This shows that the Rockets see a future with their forward that played well despite being out of position for most of 2021, and he should be an early starter for the new-look Rockets.

However, Tate's job is not set in stone.

The Rockets hit the lottery when they drafted forward Tari Eason in the middle of the first round.

How Eason slipped that far is still beyond this writer, and it feels like a lot of people will ask themsleves the same thing as we see his career unfold.

Eason was one of the best players during the Summer League and that shows no sign of slowing down. If the Rockets really are in a weird spot with K.J. Martin and their key competitors for the three are Tate, Gordon, and Eason, the minutes could start to shift in Eason's favor as the season progresses.

Youth is a need here, but good play will always come first. The job is currently Jae'Sean Tate's, but it isn't guarenteed to stay that way.

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