The 8 Greatest Rockets in history, ranked by Player Efficiency Rating (PER)

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Questions have ensued amongst Houston Rockets fans regarding who the best players are throughout the franchise’s history. It's universally accepted that Hakeem Olajuwon is the greatest player, but behind that, everyone's lists are different. 

Essentially, there's no surefire way to rank the players, so everyone's lists are different. It's all subjective, at the end of the day.

However, there might be an easier way to rank the franchise’s all-time greats: Player Efficiency Rating. 

In 2007, John Hollinger introduced PER as a one-stop shop statistic to measure which players are sub-par, while noting those that are good and great. For instance, a 15 is an average score, while a 20 is All-Star level and a 25 is superstar-level and MVP-caliber.

With this having been made clear, let's get into the eight best Rockets players in franchise history, based on PER.

8. Tracy McGrady-21.1

Tracy McGrady was multi-faceted and could do anything on the court. He was a fluid scorer and was naturally smooth.

McGrady was Paul George-like before Paul George was even in the NBA. In fact, George modeled his game after McGrady.

“I felt like I related to T-Mac the most because I was a tall, lanky kid,” said George. “I was playing the point all the way through my years growing up, and I was always like a foot taller than every kid growing up, so I felt like I related to T-Mac the most.”

McGrady is regarded as one of the greatest shooting guards to play the game and was inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in 2017.

T-Mac was a legitimate superstar with several different organizations, as he was already one of the league’s best before he was dealt to Houston in 2004. In fact, he still holds the single-season scoring record for the Orlando Magic and is their fourth-most prolific scorer in the history of the franchise.

In Houston, McGrady developed more playmaking chops, as he shared the ball with Yao Ming. Despite that, he finished as one of the league’s top-ten scorers in two of his six seasons in Houston.

McGrady was a three-level scorer who had the versatility to play and defend multiple positions. Like George, he was able to tower over defenders, due to his 6-foot-8 frame.

All told, McGrady averaged 22.7 points, 5.5 rebounds, 5.6 assists, and 1.3 assists in six seasons with the Rockets. His scoring totals rank third in franchise history, with James Harden and Moses Malone as the only two ahead of him.