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Goran Dragic vs. Jeremy Lin: Did the Houston Rockets pick the wrong guy?

I feel slightly dirty broaching this topic.  Maybe because I know I’m disguising an assertion as a question.  So I’m not exactly sure where I’m going to go with this – whether this’ll just be slightly touched on here or drawn out into a comprehensive series like last year’s Dragic vs. Lowry.  But what I’m wondering about is the question posed in the title: did the Rockets choose the wrong guy?

Lin is averaging, so far, 10.3 points, 4.3 rebounds, 7.0 assists, and 2.2 steals, per game.  Those numbers are coming at 34.3 minutes per game.  He’s shooting 34% from the field and 26% from deep.

Goran Dragic, on the other hand, per game, is averaging 16.3 points, 2.9 rebounds, 7.3 assists, 2.0 steals.  He’s shooting 47% overall and 34% from downtown.

The numbers that really matter above are the shooting percentages.

How much is Lin’s injury still bothering him?  One could argue that the weak leg is what’s keeping those accuracies down but at the same time, one of his biggest weaknesses last year was a balky jumper.

You could get much more contextual with the numbers to blow this thing open (ie: digging deeper for situational comparisons in line with each player’s offensive usage), but we’ll keep this simple, for now.

Did the Rockets pick the wrong guy?  Using the eye test, the argument can certainly be made.

I think at the time, when the decision went down, they probably made the right call going with the younger Lin.  He was better as the initial creator and #1 option and that was the role they expected him to fill.  But post-Beard, everything’s changed.

If the Rockets knew they were going to get Harden, I think they would have re-upped with Gogi.  He showed success as a 2-guard (playing next to Lowry) and is the far superior shooter – that’s important when playing next to the ball dominating Harden.  Goran’s also the peskier defender.

I can’t blame them for the decision they made at the time, but if they could do it over again, knowing what else was soon to transpire, I think the Rockets would have stayed with the Slovenian.  What do you think?

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About the author: Rahat Huq is a lawyer in real life and the founder and editor-in-chief of Red94.net.

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