Isn’t our collective exuberance over bringing back Jason Terry a sign of the times? This was the same guy who rained threes all over the Toyota Center, doing that obnoxious flying motion in humiliating McGrady’s Rockets ten years ago in bringing Dallas back from an 0-2 series deficit. Oh, and he also claimed Rockets legend Kenny Smith’s nickname and asserted it as his own, even though being given the nickname because of one’s quickness is obviously much cooler than a self-prescribed acronym in using one’s initials. But Terry is back, and we’re all thrilled, because he’s been there and we’re trying to get “there.” I didn’t think he would even sniff the court last season and was brought on primarily as trade bait (due to his contract), and maybe the former would have been true (the latter certainly was) had Pat Beverley not gotten hurt and had Isaiah Canaan not had whatever issues he and Kevin McHale had. But there Terry was, somehow starting games for the team in the freaking Western Conference Finals. I won’t talk about that last round, but while Chris Paul was hurt, sure, isn’t it amazing to reflect that the Rockets actually didn’t really get killed at the point guard position in the semis? That alone is further proof that those of you freaking out over Ty Lawson’s defensive problems need to chill the hell out. We’re going to be fine. Because we were fine with Terry and Prigioni manning the spot.
By the way, where are the people who said the Rockets don’t value chemistry? After experiencing their best season in two decades, the team brought back Terry, Corey Brewer, and Pat Beverley, keeping its core intact. Funny how that works, right? As we had been writing, in previous years, it might not have made sense to bring back the former two, because the team wasn’t really in a place to value veteran contributions. But now that they’re in an actual position to win, continuity is at a premium.
Despite his contributions last season, hopefully Terry won’t have to see the court this season. Lawson and Beverley should split the lion’s share of the minutes at the position, allowing the old man to bring value in the lockerroom. I didn’t really understand the importance of veteran leadership until last season when, time and time again, the team refused to give up until the very end. You have to believe that guys like Terry and Trevor Ariza played instrumental roles there, convincing the team that every champion faces adversity.