Should the Houston Rockets pursue Eric Bledsoe? Part 2, a defensive comparison to Patrick Beverley

The Eric Bledsoe negotiations continue.  I posed the question last week whether the Rockets should be in pursuit of the free agent guard.  It’s time to look deeper into the numbers.  To begin, Bledsoe’s greatest selling point may be that while he isn’t anywhere near elite offensively, he has developed a reputation as a true “two-way” player, someone able to provide significantly above average production on both ends of the floor.  Let’s dig in to Bledsoe’s defensive numbers.

The obvious point of comparison here would be Patrick Beverley, the man Bledsoe would be signed to replace in the starting lineup, if acquired.  As is the case with any statistical exploration, take these numbers with a grain of salt as any player’s individual production is inherently linked within the ecosystem of defensive schemes and interactions in which he exists.  Houston ranked 13th in the league last season in defensive efficiency; Phoenix was 15th.

Bledsoe’s man scored on 38.5% of his opportunities against him.  That figure was 39% for Beverley.

In isolation, Bledsoe’s man scored on 45.9% of his tries; Beverley’s man scored just 25.8% of the time, good for 18th in the entire league.  (Bledsoe ranked 208th).

When his man was the pick and roll ball handler, Bledsoe’s man scored on 39.8% of his tries; Beverley’s man scored on 37.9% of his opportunities.

In the post, Bledsoe’s man scored on 64.3% of his opportunities.  Beverley’s man scored on 50% of his tries.  (Keep in mind that in sharing the backcourt with point guard Goran Dragic, Bledsoe also often guarded the opposing shooting guard, depending upon the matchup).

When his man was the roll man in the pick and roll, Bledsoe’s man scored on 40% of his tries; Beverley’s man scored on 63.6% of his tries.  (While this is a high rate of accuracy, the actual numbers were just 7 for 11).

When his man spotted up, Bledsoe’s man scored on 30.6% of his tries; Beverley’s man scored on 43.9%.

When coming off of a screen, Bledsoe’s man scored on 38.9% of his tries, while Beverley’s man scored on 39.6% of his tries.

And lastly, off the hand-off, Bledsoe’s man scored on 30.6% of his tries, while Beverley’s man scored on 39.5% of his tries.

Reviewing the above results, aside from isolation, the two players’ defensive production is rather comparable.  As a side note, while Bledsoe’s man shot 40% against him in isolation, Beverley’s man shot just 26.7% from the floor when isolated.  That’s decadent.

What does all of this mean?  First, Patrick Beverley is a very bad man, especially when presented with an individual matchup sans a pick.  These numbers seem to confirm the observation many readers had previously noted that Beverley’s biggest (or more actually, sole) weakness is pick and roll coverage.  He often gets over-aggressive and can get lost against complex schemes.

This raises the statement: why pay Bledsoe all that money when Beverley is already putting up similar, slightly better defensive production?  Because if we’ve concluded Beverley is elite (maybe the best in the league?), what does it say about Bledsoe that his numbers are just as good?  Further, what does it say about Bledsoe that his defensive production is on par with Beverley but he provides offense as well?  (On the flip side, how much weight do we want to give to the isolation disparity?)

How much can these numbers be trusted?  For various reasons, I’ve refrained from including RAPM in this analysis.  These figures from Synergy are as close a thing to isolating metrics as are publicly available.  But as previously stated, the dust of team performance still remains.  Beverley had Dwight Howard behind him while Bledsoe had Plumlee and the freaking Morris twins.  On the other hand, Beverley was often concerned with containing Harden’s man as well, while Bledsoe shared the court with a similarly committed partner in Goran Dragic.  But then on the other hand, Phoenix has a coaching staff, while Houston didn’t seem to ever even practice.  But back on the other hand, Beverley’s entire focus was on the defensive end whereas Bledsoe was relied upon to shoulder a significant chunk of the offense.

Lastly, how significant is that isolation disparity as a factor of the overall production?  What does it tell us?  It means if they are facing an opponent one-on-one, Eric Bledsoe’s man is far, far, far likelier to score against him than Pat Beverley’s.  But if their men are still scoring at nearly the exact same rate (38.5% for Bledsoe, 39% for Beverley; 39.9% from the field for Bledsoe, 40.7% for Beverley), does that matter?  A good team like, say, all of the Western Conference, can scheme to get a guy a screen so he isn’t on an island.  But it must be of some comfort to know that if a particular player is guarding a player in isolation, that opposing player will not score, as is the case with Beverley.

A final note: Damian Lillard’s performance against Beverley in the playoffs is not an accurate indicator of Beverley’s abilities, so please don’t use that in this discussion.  There is a drastic difference between being medically cleared to play and being at sufficient performance level, much less peak performance level.  Being medically cleared to play basketball just means that the doctors have determined that if you play, you aren’t at risk of further injuring yourself.  At that point, it is up to you and your coaches to determine whether you can withstand the pain and whether your performance is not detrimental to the team.  This is a far cry from being in proper condition to compete against the best athletes of the world.

In the next installment, we’ll look at what Bledsoe provides offensively.

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  • rocketrick says 3 weeks ago As I predicted, the Bledsoe story fades away to black..............

    Although truthfully, until Bledsoe signs the QO on or before October 1, I suppose anything could still happen.

    Seems quite unlikely to me.

    Bledsoe, just like Monroe, is likely destined to be an UFA at the conclusion of the upcoming season.

    Go Rockets!!!!!
  • rockets best fan says 3 weeks ago

    @JG

    defensive coordinator? Wade Phillips is still looking for a job, even he might be better than McHale :lol:

  • thejohnnygold says 3 weeks ago

    JG do they not go after Bev since it's so much easier against harden or jones? How can you know?

    Once again, since I can't access mysynergy for some reason I can't produce the numbers, but if that were true then Harden would have a zillion "opportunities" against him....which he doesn't. Our team defense sucked last year--the Harden Defensive Hate is short-sighted and so far overblown that I am not sure it can ever come back to reality. We had 3 bad defenders last year. Singling out one player on anything besides ISO's misses this point.

    Further, the only comp I did was with Lin/Bev who play with the same dudes so it is a moot point.

    Opposing coaches likely wanted to test Bledsoe's knee when he got back from surgery so they may have gone at him more to see if he could handle it. I never implied that I would know anything; rather, I simply want more information. From there I can infer better. You know I love context--the more the better. Why would I ignore it?

    I simply prefer to view volume data with my percentage data--even Rahat did that above on one of the sets of data since it was so small.

    Oh, and to answer your question best--I canknow because I watched the games. That is how.

    How many times did we see this exchange on defense last year?

    Bev funnels ridiculously fast PG away from center of court towards baseline on a drive. He is playing "team" defense. He is expecting Dwight Howard to be there. Unfortunately, Dwight is covering for Terrence Jones who is eye-balling some nachos in the stands, or something....anything besides his defensive assignment. Dwight, in his effort to cover for his man and Jones' misses the rotation and is late getting there to block the easy lay-up and Bev looks at him, hands out palms up, like, "Man, it makes me look bad when you do that. I purposely forced him that way because YOU are supposed to be here!"

    That, in a nutshell, was a lot of our defense last year. It's a bigger problem than one person. Which reminds me....who the heck is going to be our Def. Coordinator this year?!?!?!

  • timetodienow1234567 says 3 weeks ago JG do they not go after Bev since it's so much easier against harden or jones? How can you know?
  • thejohnnygold says 3 weeks ago

    Nice comparison. I can't seem to access mysynergysports.com anymore (what's with that?) so I can't answer these questions myself, but I am curious about the volume numbers relative to games, or minutes, played.

    Back when the Lin/Bev comps were being made Lin fans would cite the similar statistical numbers while ignoring the much higher per minute volume of shots taken against him. I found that Beverley has what the MIT stat guys termed "The Dwight Effect" where a player simply wipes opportunities off the stat sheet entirely. Simply put, his defense is so good players don't even try to score--he takes them out of the play. (unless there is a screen apparently)

    To me, there is no better percentage than zero--which is the odds of a shot not taken going in. I would be curious to know how Bev/Bledsoe compare.

    It was also noted that Bledsoe spends a lot of time playing against SG's versus PG's. Given the near unanimous opinion that PG's are at an all-time high across the league while SG's are down does this affect people's opinions?

  • Alituro says 3 weeks ago

    Nice! I had no idea just how monstrous Beverley has been against isos. To me, there is no difference other than the ISO stat in these two players, defensively. I can't wait to see the offensive comparison. I think PB has all the tools to be a solid offensive player, or two-way but that his focus has been on defense lately because of playing with CP and Harden. But, we'll probably never see him elevate his offensive stats because there are 4 other equally (or more) proficient offensive players he's sharing the court with. He does all we need him to, protect the ball bringing it up the court and get it to Harden to make a play. He makes himself available as an outlet and is able to hit the 3 pretty decently. Has a nice floater when the space opens up. As often the primary playmaker, Bledsoe's role on the Suns was totally different, but one thing glares at me in his stats: 3.3/5.5 AST/TO... That's 60% of the plays he makes for others being erased by boneheaded plays. Similar to someone else we knowknew that I won't name 2.5/4.1.. 60%. Compared to my main man, PB at 1.2/2.7 for a respectable 44%. For even money, I still think I prefer PB.

    Dragic: 2.8/5.9 for 47%.

    It' s those one or two extra mistakes that costs us games!

  • Red94 says 3 weeks ago New post: Should the Houston Rockets pursue Eric Bledsoe? Part 2, a defensive comparison to Patrick Beverley
    By: rahat huq

    The Eric Bledsoe negotiations continue.  I posed the question last week whether the Rockets should be in pursuit of the free agent guard.  It's time to look deeper into the numbers.  To begin, Bledsoe's greatest selling point may be that while he isn't anywhere near elite offensively, he has developed a reputation as a true "two-way" player, someone able to provide significantly above average production on both ends of the floor.  Let's dig in to Bledsoe's defensive numbers.

    The obvious point of comparison here would be Patrick Beverley, the man Bledsoe would be signed to replace in the starting lineup, if acquired.  As is the case with any statistical exploration, take these numbers with a grain of salt as any player's individual production is inherently linked within the ecosystem of defensive schemes and interactions in which he exists.  Houston ranked 13th in the league last season in defensive efficiency; Phoenix was 15th.

    Bledsoe's man scored on 38.5% of his opportunities against him.  That figure was 39% for Beverley.

    In isolation, Bledsoe's man scored on 45.9% of his tries; Beverley's man scored just 25.8% of the time, good for 18th in the entire league.  (Bledsoe ranked 208th).

    When his man was the pick and roll ball handler, Bledsoe's man scored on 39.8% of his tries; Beverley's man scored on 37.9% of his opportunities.

    In the post, Bledsoe's man scored on 64.3% of his opportunities.  Beverley's man scored on 50% of his tries.  (Keep in mind that in sharing the backcourt with point guard Goran Dragic, Bledsoe also often guarded the opposing shooting guard, depending upon the matchup).

    When his man was the roll man in the pick and roll, Bledsoe's man scored on 40% of his tries; Beverley's man scored on 63.6% of his tries.  (While this is a high rate of accuracy, the actual numbers were just 7 for 11).

    When his man spotted up, Bledsoe's man scored on 30.6% of his tries; Beverley's man scored on 43.9%.

    When coming off of a screen, Bledsoe's man scored on 38.9% of his tries, while Beverley's man scored on 39.6% of his tries.

    And lastly, off the hand-off, Bledsoe's man scored on 30.6% of his tries, while Beverley's man scored on 39.5% of his tries.

    Reviewing the above results, aside from isolation, the two players' defensive production is rather comparable.  As a side note, while Bledsoe's man shot 40% against him in isolation, Beverley's man shot just 26.7% from the floor when isolated.  That's decadent.

    What does all of this mean?  First, Patrick Beverley is a very bad man, especially when presented with an individual matchup sans a pick.  These numbers seem to confirm the observation many readers had previously noted that Beverley's biggest (or more actually, sole) weakness is pick and roll coverage.  He often gets over-aggressive and can get lost against complex schemes.

    This raises the statement: why pay Bledsoe all that money when Beverley is already putting up similar, slightly better defensive production?  Because if we've concluded Beverley is elite (maybe the best in the league?), what does it say about Bledsoe that his numbers are just as good?  Further, what does it say about Bledsoe that his defensive production is on par with Beverley but he provides offense as well?  (On the flip side, how much weight do we want to give to the isolation disparity?)

    How much can these numbers be trusted?  For various reasons, I've refrained from including RAPM in this analysis.  These figures from Synergy are as close a thing to isolating metrics as are publicly available.  But as previously stated, the dust of team performance still remains.  Beverley had Dwight Howard behind him while Bledsoe had Plumlee and the freaking Morris twins.  On the other hand, Beverley was often concerned with containing Harden's man as well, while Bledsoe shared the court with a similarly committed partner in Goran Dragic.  But then on the other hand, Phoenix has a coaching staff, while Houston didn't seem to ever even practice.  But back on the other hand, Beverley's entire focus was on the defensive end whereas Bledsoe was relied upon to shoulder a significant chunk of the offense.

    Lastly, how significant is that isolation disparity as a factor of the overall production?  What does it tell us?  It means if they are facing an opponent one-on-one, Eric Bledsoe's man is far, far, far likelier to score against him than Pat Beverley's.  But if their men are still scoring at nearly the exact same rate (38.5% for Bledsoe, 39% for Beverley; 39.9% from the field for Bledsoe, 40.7% for Beverley), does that matter?  A good team like, say, all of the Western Conference, can scheme to get a guy a screen so he isn't on an island.  But it must be of some comfort to know that if a particular player is guarding a player in isolation, that opposing player will not score, as is the case with Beverley.

    A final note: Damian Lillard's performance against Beverley in the playoffs is not an accurate indicator of Beverley's abilities, so please don't use that in this discussion.  There is a drastic difference between being medically cleared to play and being at sufficient performance level, much less peak performance level.  Being medically cleared to play basketball just means that the doctors have determined that if you play, you aren't at risk of further injuring yourself.  At that point, it is up to you and your coaches to determine whether you can withstand the pain and whether your performance is not detrimental to the team.  This is a far cry from being in proper condition to compete against the best athletes of the world.

    In the next installment, we'll look at what Bledsoe provides offensively.

  • rockets best fan says 3 weeks ago

    @Rahat/rocketrick

    funny you would take Rondo who has a much longer injury rap sheet and is an older player by SIX years. :blink:

  • Johnny Rocket says 4 weeks ago

    Rondo is a huge risk--his win-share statistics have decline each of the past five years (see the advance statistics at

  • Jatman20 says 4 weeks ago Very risky for a guy that demands max money: four seasons in the league with two of those years at about 40 games played while the other two were almost complete seasons. Doesn't seem like a Morey decision (knowing how Yao and McGrady set this franchise back). IMO Morey is angling to get Dragic. Dorsey, Ish, Jeff A., Ariza .......took a run at Lowry and now-Dragic.
  • rocketrick says 4 weeks ago

    I'd prefer Rondo, if it requires the same cost.


    I'm with you on this one, even though Rondo sucks with his outside shooting touch. Perhaps, Maybe, the Rockets System can turn Rondo into a more Efficient Shooter..............I for one am willing to gamble on that part....

    Rondo's Defense..........OK, Just what the Rockets Need.......Do I Need to Say More???
  • Red94 says 4 weeks ago

    I'd prefer Rondo, if it requires the same cost.

  • Alituro says 1 month ago

    The Suns have had no other primary scoring options over the past couple years other than their guards. During Linsanity, Jeremy rose to prominence by virtue of the same when Carmelo was injured.

    I guess my point is: How much of Bledsoe's perceived talent comes from the system, and how well will that translate to a much more balanced attack like ours? I'm sure Morey's numbers show it. My fear is that in a balanced attack, he reverts to basically a serviceable PG rather than potential star and we end up way overpaying for him. Not to mention the injury issues.

    Unless the commodity has proven value, in our current situation, I would find it tough to invest heavily on a question mark. Because of the question on Bledsoe, I would rather wait and see what known commodities open up before the trade deadline. This way we are better able to ascertain our needs, because plenty could happen between now and then in the way of injuries and such. If we sign Bledsoe we are shackled to this roster all season, and I just don't think he's the difference maker we're all looking for. That we have basically the same potential without him as we do with.

  • txtdo1411 says 1 month ago

    If Morey feels the loss of flexibility is justified by signing him, then I am completely fine with it. Like JG said, he knows a lot more about the situation than any of us do, so I will support his decision whatever it may be.

    As far as the Rockets having the 16th best line up in the league, that is pretty laughable. I think most of us agree an upgrade would be nice, but this is basically the same starting line up that won 54 games last season in the first year of a Howard/Harden pairing. So swap Parsons with Ariza, include chemistry gained from another off-season together, consider this is Jones' and Beverley's second season starting and they should be better, Harden and Dwight are talking like players ready to dominate. All this equals about a 10 team drop off in talent from last year to this... yea makes total sense.

  • The Duke of Earl. says 1 month ago Daryl Morey should definitely chase Eric Bledsoe at any cost. T Jones untouchable. Bledsoe provides energy on offense and Defense. We all know Pat Beverly is a beast but he can't score with other PG's let alone Elite ones. Morey says you can't win a Championship without 3 superstars. Just go ask Gregg Popovich, oh wait he's the exception.
  • Losthief says 1 month ago

    i still like millsap for our team the most, and he's a FA next year (meaning in the final year of his contract), where we could have i think roughly 15 mil to offer. Just sayin...bledsoe isn't the only, and imho not even close to the best option for upgrading this roster. It was a link in another post i made about a month ago...but multiple injuries early in careers deflate growth curves in star players, aka bledsoe.

    Also Rondo is a FA next year, and Dragic likely opts out of his 7.5 mil salary early (don't see how he wouldn't sans injury). Advantage of FA over trade is we keep our assets, disadvantage...we have to wait. Also we could always hope that portland just submarines somehow and LA still chooses to leave, he has said he's staying...but hasn't signed on any dotted line yet :D, jk jk, but you know its like the gov't with hackers, if you can't beat 'em, higher 'em.

  • rocketrick says 1 month ago

    @rocketrick
    if 12 mil per is the going rate for decent PG's paying 2 extra mil per year isn't going to break our piggy bank. as far as what it will take to acquire Bledsoe.......I guarantee the next opportunity we come across to get a star player they will be asking for more than Papa, expiring contracts and the Pelicans pick


    Who is your source confirming the Suns would be willing to accept Papanikolaou, expiring contracts and the Rockets 1st round pick via New Orleans (Asik trade)?

    I've read others on this board suggesting that as a "workable" trade scenario on this site, but I don't see anyone like Woj, etc. reporting this.

    Bledsoe is not a true PG but for the right price and contract, I would welcome him to the team.

    However, Bledsoe and his agent know Bledsoe's injury issues which is why I am confident Bledsoe will not sign anywhere short-term (including Houston) other than having to accept Phoenix's qualifying offer to become an Unrestricted Free Agent next summer.

    If your and others on this board premise is that "there truly is nobody else out there", then Morey is definitely under pressure to make something out of nothing. I just don't believe that is the case.

    Bledsoe and his agent want a Max, 5-year deal to re-sign with Phoenix. Players like Bledsoe and Parsons think they are worth more than they really are. The only way for players like Bledsoe to know for certain their worth is to test free agency. Which is why unless the Rockets step up big-time (very doubtful in my opinion), Bledsoe is more likely to remain a Sun and let the market next summer determine his worth.
  • Johnny Rocket says 1 month ago

    I agree with Rockets Best Friend. There are two key questions here: What is the probability that Bledsoe remains more or less healthy? He didn't suffer a career-threatening injury along the lines of Shaun Livingston, so I'd put it at 80 percent. What, then, is the probability that Bledsoe develops into a star player (as defined per JG as a top-ten point guard)? I'll put it at an even 50 percent. That seems justified--Bledsoe seems to have more upside than Lowry and Dragic did at this point in their respective careers. So if this is right, then there is a 40 percent chance that Bledsoe develops into a star, a 40 percent chance he turns into a perfectly respectable point guard who meshes well with Harden, and a 20 percent he's a complete bust who rarely sees the court. Given how hard it is to get a star player, I'd happily give up Papa, the expiring contracts, and the Pelicans pick to take that chance. The key variable is the length of the contract--this is hard gamble to make on a four-year max deal, but I think it is worth the risk for a two-year deal or a three-year deal with a team option.

  • rockets best fan says 1 month ago

    @rocketrick

    we would have loss Bosh whether we kept Parsons or not. remember we loss Bosh first. if we had matched on Parsons at that point our big 3 was Harden, D-12 and Parsons. do I believe Harden, D-12, Bledsoe and Ariza is better.........YES. I agree our front line is thin, however it's going to be thin whether we chase Bledsoe or not. it seems I have a little more faith that T-Jones and D-Mo will fill a little more of that void than what you're expecting. no their not going to light the world on fire, but I feel they can hold their own. I heard you say several times that Bledsoe's price is too high...........if 12 mil per is the going rate for decent PG's paying 2 extra mil per year isn't going to break our piggy bank. as far as what it will take to acquire Bledsoe.......I guarantee the next opportunity we come across to get a star player they will be asking for more than Papa, expiring contracts and the Pelicans pick

  • rocketrick says 1 month ago

    @rocketrick
    the difference with the Harden, D-12 and Parsons big 3 and the Harden, D-12 and Bledsoe big 3 is with the second one you get Ariza which in my mind would be like having the Harden, D-12, Parsons and Bledsoe big 4 since Ariza and Parsons are interchangeable to me


    Couple points of contention I would like to bring up.

    First of all, the Harden, D12, Parsons, Bosh "big 4" trumps everything else to say the least. One of the underrated reasons this made sense was the flexibility in that Bosh could play some C along with PF, Parsons does play some PF minutes though is primarily a SF and having D12, Bosh and Parsons in the frontcourt provided ample size and top notch scoring ability, particularly when the NBA's top SG, Harden, is factored in.

    Your proposed 'big 4" of Harden, D12, Bledsoe and Ariza has some big holes, sorry to say. For one, a very undersized frontline with no help at all for D12. Secondly, Bledsoe has ALWAYS been paired with a true PG throughout college and his professional career. That would not be the case with the Rockets except for spare minutes here and there when Harden is resting. I would like to see some real statistics on Bledsoe vs. Beverley in terms of defensive proficiency. I just don't buy that Bledsoe is automatically a major improvement to team defense, especially as he is undersized at 6 ft. 1 and 190 pounds compared to most PG's and SG's in the league. Even Ty Lawson at 5 foot 11 has better rebound numbers and assist numbers and better shooting percentages from FG, FT and 3 point line than Bledsoe.

    Last but not least, Bledsoe's pricetag is too rich for my blood. He and his agent turned down 4 years, $48 million from the Suns. He wants and expects more. He won't sign with the Rockets for $12 million if he turned it down in Phoenix. With his injury history, I seriously doubt Bledsoe and his agent will even entertain a shorter term contract.

    RBF, I appreciate your love of the Rockets and desire to turn them into a title team sooner than later. However, I couldn't disagree with you more on anything than on this.

    I don't pretend to know all the answers. However, I can imagine that Morey and his team have a "big board" of sorts with all kinds of potential players on it that could be had by the February trade deadline or by next summer at the latest that probably makes a heck of a lot more sense than pushing all the chips on the table towards Bledsoe. As difficult as it is even for me, patience is a virtue that I expect can and will pay off for the Rockets.
  • rockets best fan says 1 month ago

    @rocketrick

    the difference with the Harden, D-12 and Parsons big 3 and the Harden, D-12 and Bledsoe big 3 is with the second one you get Ariza which in my mind would be like having the Harden, D-12, Parsons and Bledsoe big 4 since Ariza and Parsons are interchangeable to me

  • rocketrick says 1 month ago Bledsoe is 6 foot 1, 195 pounds so certainly undersized to play any significant minutes at the SG position. He is a scorer so I can understand that he could be a potential backup at SG when Harden needs a rest.

    Bledsoe has been in the league for 4 seasons. He missed 41 games and 39 games in 2 of those seasons.

    Bledsoe does not have impressive assists numbers, especially considering his size limitations, he is more of a true PG.

    His cost is just too exhorbitant in this Rockets fan's opinion. I'd rather have had the Harden/Howard/Parsons "big 3" rather than the prospect of tying up roster flexibility for a Harden/Howard/Bledsoe 'big 3"
  • rocketrick says 1 month ago

    Is Beverly with those numbers, Harden and Howard enough? Im not sure. It doesn't have to be Bledsoe, but we have to do something with the TPE, and non guaranteed contracts because there isn't real difference makers in free agency next year even if there was we only have marginal cap space. Bledsoe is obviously available so he gets the most buzz but theres more than likely a few other quality players quietly available.


    Likely more options as the season plays out by the February Trade Deadline, too.
  • rocketrick says 1 month ago

    As a follow up to all that, HoopsHabit just posted this list of the "Top Starting Line-Ups In the League". Houston came in at #14 :(

    So, at least we know that most everyone thinks we need to upgrade...a lot. I seem to be in the minority here. :lol:

    EDIT: Bonus outrage for the teams ahead of us.

    Raptors, Nuggets, Hawks, Mavs (at #6!!!!), and Warriors (#2!!!!!).


    Who were these supposed experts choice of top lineups prior to the start of last season and how did they do results wise?
  • rocketrick says 1 month ago

    @JG
    get Lin back? you're kidding right :unsure:I wouldn't take Lin back if he offered to play for the Rockets for free. Lin at 5 dollars isn't a bargain to me :lol:we just gave away a first round pick to get rid of him. why on earth would we get back on that road when we already knowTHE BRIDGE IS OUT. those last two Lillard and Conley are below Bledsoe in potential IMO. I can't really argue with the rest, however what are our chances of obtaining any of them? Rondo and Rose have a more troubling injury history than Bledsoe so if that measuring stick is used they are out. I doubt Reggie Jackson can be had for 5 mil. when his current contract plays out he will probably land in the 10-13 mil per range. the way players are requesting MAX contracts I would notbe surprised if he was also seeking one when the time comes. I area I do agree with you is Beverly taking a step this year, however I do still feel an upgrade is necessary.


    I disagree that Bledsoe is a better player than Lillard. Conley is borderline, but at least Conley has missed very few games and has improved greatly the past 2 seasons.

    I agree that Reggie Jackson will likely sign with OKC or elsewhere for at least $10 million per after the end of this season.
  • rockets best fan says 1 month ago

    @JG

    I think you view us from a different perspective than me. I love this team, but my goal is to be that one fan base see the season as a success. I enjoy the sport as much as the next guy, but I want to win. we clearly have a championship window open. we must strike the metal while it's hot.Yes we could win the championship. I believe we have the necessary pieces if they were deployed properly. problem is the person responsible for deployment :lol:the reason for some of our lack of national support is they know we don't have a good coach. do I believe a different coach can take this team to another level?..........ABSOLUTELY. however since we kept McHale believing that he will be able to get any more than the sum total of our talent outof the team would be foolish base on his inability to EVER have done it before. I feel where you're coming from. I just view the situation completely differently. I have followed the Rockets faithfully since their arrival here and have enjoy the team win lose or draw. however just because I will accept the result and keep pulling for them if they fail doesn't mean I like failing. the goal is to be the best. I wouldlike nothing more thantalking crap to a couple of my friends (they are Rocket haters) and having them unable to respond :Pit's part of the experience to me.

    I agree with you this team even without improvement will beat the national perception. are they good enough to win a championship with McHale driving the boat?...............NO. unless things break extremely favorable it's high unlikely. I want the team to reach that level, however the realistic side of me says it's not going to happen without upgrading the team

  • thejohnnygold says 1 month ago

    As a follow up to all that, HoopsHabit just posted this list of the "Top Starting Line-Ups In the League". Houston came in at #14 :(

    So, at least we know that most everyone thinks we need to upgrade...a lot. I seem to be in the minority here. :lol:

    EDIT: Bonus outrage for the teams ahead of us.

    Raptors, Nuggets, Hawks, Mavs (at #6!!!!), and Warriors (#2!!!!!).

    dude.gif

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    I'd say that about sums up Rockets fans' reactions. :angry:

  • thejohnnygold says 1 month ago

    @JG

    get Lin back? you're kidding right :unsure:I wouldn't take Lin back if he offered to play for the Rockets for free. Lin at 5 dollars isn't a bargain to me :lol:we just gave away a first round pick to get rid of him. why on earth would we get back on that road when we already knowTHE BRIDGE IS OUT. those last two Lillard and Conley are below Bledsoe in potential IMO. I can't really argue with the rest, however what are our chances of obtaining any of them? Rondo and Rose have a more troubling injury history than Bledsoe so if that measuring stick is used they are out. I doubt Reggie Jackson can be had for 5 mil. when his current contract plays out he will probably land in the 10-13 mil per range. the way players are requesting MAX contracts I would notbe surprised if he was also seeking one when the time comes. I area I do agree with you is Beverly taking a step this year, however I do still feel an upgrade is necessary.

    I'm not talking about acquiring all of these guys--obviously Chris Paul is not going anywhere nor are quite a few others. I was just trying to get an idea of where Bledsoe sits among his peers in relation to the value contract he wants. I am aware of Rose and Rondo's injuries--which is why they fell below the top tier. Unlike Bledsoe, they are known commodities when healthy so I rank them above him just slightly for now--if their health holds then higher for sure.

    The point is not to obtain any of them (sure, if one comes available we have to look into it). The point is in trying to better evaluate Bledsoe's value.

    I don't know about Reggie Jackson getting $10-$13M....that seems more egregious than Bledsoe's demands.

    I'm glad we both think Bev is going to have a good year for us. Which brings me to the next point...Is that enough?

    @Cooper--we aren't trying to win it with 3 guys. I think Ariza is being under-valued to the point of being forgotten. He will be key for us the same way he was key for Washington last season. Terrence Jones is going to be better too. Dwight Howard is going to be better. Harden is going to be better. Daniels is going to have a solid role making all other three point shooters in the league feel inadequate. D-Mo.....eh, we'll see....I certainly wouldn't bet the mortgage on him, but if he can give us 20 solid mpg I think that will be great. I think Papa will become a fan favorite quickly. Jeff Adrien and Dorsey are complete afterthoughts, but shouldn't be. For some reason, our roster is viewed like it got scraped off of someone's shoe after a walk through a dog park. That will change soon enough.

    This roster has talent and depth. Is it good enough to win a championship? Yes, yes it is. Why shouldn't it be? Ours is not the only championship-caliber roster that won't even see the finals this season. San Antonio, OKC, and LAC all have the same plans--at least 2 of them will have their fans call the season a failure when it is all said and done (I bet Portland believes they are in the conversation too). In the East, the Bulls, Cavs, Raps, and Bobcats all think they have a shot at the finals (Bobcats will be good if Big Al stays on the court). Obviously, the top 2 have the best chance which still guarantees one team's fans declaring the season a failure.

    I don't subscribe to this philosophy.

    Can we make our team better? Of course. Adding LaMarcus Aldridge is a no-brainer....if we could do it without gutting the roster. Adding Kevin Durant would be a nice addition too. Here's the problem: We are constricted by a thousand variables which primarily boil down to what we can do followed by what we should do. Most of what we can do is not conducive with what weshould do.

    Personally, I think we are viewing Bledsoe the way the rest of the league seemed to view Parsons. Why do we see a star where there is no star? Caveat emptor is written all over this guy, but people don't see it. They see what they want to see: a young, up-and-coming, two-way stud that is a hybrid of LBJ and Pippen who will come in and immediately elevate us to contenders. I think it's an illusion--a mirage in the desert that is the current state of NBA free agency.

    What was it Eddie Murphy said? If a man is hungry enough, you can give him a cracker and he'll think it's the best thing he's ever eaten. (it was funnier when he said it) Bledsoe is that cracker. The fans are hungry and he looks good.

    In the meantime, we've got a perfectly good "PB" sandwich in our own lunch pail.

  • rockets best fan says 1 month ago

    @Cooper

    I agree with you..........there are probably a few more quality players quietly available, but do they have star potential? also if they do....what will it take to acquire them?

  • Cooper says 1 month ago

    Is Beverly with those numbers, Harden and Howard enough? Im not sure. It doesn't have to be Bledsoe, but we have to do something with the TPE, and non guaranteed contracts because there isn't real difference makers in free agency next year even if there was we only have marginal cap space. Bledsoe is obviously available so he gets the most buzz but theres more than likely a few other quality players quietly available.

  • rockets best fan says 1 month ago

    @JG

    get Lin back? you're kidding right :unsure:I wouldn't take Lin back if he offered to play for the Rockets for free. Lin at 5 dollars isn't a bargain to me :lol:we just gave away a first round pick to get rid of him. why on earth would we get back on that road when we already knowTHE BRIDGE IS OUT. those last two Lillard and Conley are below Bledsoe in potential IMO. I can't really argue with the rest, however what are our chances of obtaining any of them? Rondo and Rose have a more troubling injury history than Bledsoe so if that measuring stick is used they are out. I doubt Reggie Jackson can be had for 5 mil. when his current contract plays out he will probably land in the 10-13 mil per range. the way players are requesting MAX contracts I would notbe surprised if he was also seeking one when the time comes. I area I do agree with you is Beverly taking a step this year, however I do still feel an upgrade is necessary.

  • thejohnnygold says 1 month ago

    Ha, I see what you did there, RBF. :lol: Yes, I would accept it. My knowledge and opinion of Bledsoe is far below what Morey will be applying to this decision. If he sees fit to bring him in, then I will support it while reserving "I told you so" rights for when his knee crumbles. :P I have no problem with him as a player. I think he is being over-valued given what I know of the situation.

    Here is a perspective that I think adds some relativity to this question. Where does Bledsoe rank amongst the current PG's? Yes, this is very subjective so take it for what it's worth. Still, when considering value in relation to production what kind and how many other options exist is very important. There is only 1 Lebron. Eric Bledsoe on the other hand....

    In no particular order, this is a list of PG's I'd rather have for a 4 year/$64M deal (allegedly what we would have to offer up to get him)

    Chris Paul

    Steph Curry

    John Wall

    Tony Parker

    Russell Westbrook

    Kyle Lowry

    Goran Dragic

    Mike Conley

    Damian Lillard

    ......after here it gets murky...

    Rajon Rondo ?

    Derrick Rose ? (can he stay healthy?)

    Ty Lawson ?

    I think Bledsoe falls into that group of 3 above. He is not a known commodity and to give him that contract is a roll of the dice plain and simple.

    Now, on the flip side....what could we get in the $5-$8M range instead of Bledsoe? (again, in no particular order)

    Monta Ellis

    Reggie Jackson (presuming he falls around the $5M range)

    Patrick Beverley

    Brandon Jennings

    Jeremy Lin

    ...that's a good enough sample. These payers have flaws, but bring a lot to the table...Jackson has improved steadily and knows this season will go along way towards getting him off of OKC's bench and into a starting role somewhere.

    Then there are the $3M or less guys.

    This is a hodge podge of young and old. You can find value here because the production does not need to be as significant in relation to the cost. Now, can you find championship value here? Probably not long term.

    So, Bledsoe finds himself near the bottom of the top 15 (largely based on potential) of PG's. Now, for half, or less, of that roll-of-the-dice-contract Houston can put their money on a sure thing--a known commodity--that will bring close to the same production--none of those guys represent the balance between offense and defense that Bledsoe does; however, I think it is not as wide a disparity as people think.

    I know this might be too soon, but if we could sign Lin back for say $5M would you not take him? We know what he brings to the team and I think it would be worth that $5M. His defense was a tad under-rated and his offense is there--it just needs some fine-tuning on the passing part.

    Forget Lin.....Patrick Beverley! I am so ready for him to break out on offense. I think he is better than most believe and I think he is going to show it to the tune of 15, 5, and 5 this season while playing alongside Harden and Howard. By the end of this season, the disparity between Bledsoe and Beverley will make this debate all but moot. At least, that's my prediction. :P

  • rockets best fan says 1 month ago

    @Rahat

    I have been debating this very subject in other threads. I agree with Johnny Rocket, there are several issues to consider before one can make a reasonable choice base on facts. I would expand on those first.

    1. if you trade for Bledsoe. how much are you willing to pay? is he worth a MAX? if not .....how much then?

    2. what are you willing to give up to trade for him? if Phoenix wants T-Jones and Pelicans pick plus Papa and expiring contractsis that to much?

    3. does he have the upside to become a star? what are the chances he reaches that potential if he does?

    4. how would his fit with our present team look? is he enough of an upgrade over Beverly to warrant what we must give up?

    5. he does have an injury history that must be weighed into the equation. is there reason to believe he will remain healthy?

    6. acquiring Bledsoe means we will ride T-Jones at PF. Yes we could still get some help at the position, but T-Jones in probably the starter

    7. while things change in the NBA all the time.......of the star players who could possibly be available over the next couple of years is there one who would be better that we would have a reasonable chance to acquire?

    8. can Harden, Howard and Bledsoe be the foundation of a championship team?

    9. and last but not least.......if we acquire him will JG ever accept him as a Rocket player? :lol:just messing with you :lol:

    answers according to rockets best fan

    1. Bledsoe is worth up to 14 mil per IMO. not MAX, but close to it.

    2. the most I would trade is Papa, expiringcontracts and the Pelicans pick. if pushed I might include Covington or Canaan

    3. YES this guy will become a star player. he has only scratch the surface of his potential

    4. his fit here would be like a glove. with his acquisition we will have the best point guard defense in the league. his ability to also play SG would allow us to run him and Beverly togetherin certain lineups. offensively we have another player to attack the basket. his shooting still needs a little work, but he changes the dynamics of how we must be guarded. the other players on the floor will benefit from this affect

    5. I have covered this in the other thread so I will only say here that YES I believe there is reasonable evidence to conclude he will stay healthy.

    6. I am for allowing T-Jones to grow into the PF position. I expect him to take another step this year. I think his playoff performance has extinguished some people's hope regarding him.....not mine. taking your lumps at the hands of the best is part of the learning process.

    7. my magic 8 ball says :lol: there will be no more stars of Bledsoe's caliber that we can reasonable acquire for this cheap over the next 2 years. better get on board before the train leaves the station

    8. YES Harden, Howard and Bledsoe can be the core of a championship

    9. I don't know about this one :lol:best I let the man speak for himself. however knowing JG I bet he will come around :wub:

  • Johnny Rocket says 1 month ago

    I'm not saying that Beverley will get $15 million, but teams like Dallas and the Knicks will be on the market, and in the ensuing game of musical point guards, it is quite likely that some team will be make a nice $8-1o million offer to Beverley. Teams know that Morey wants to maintain flexibility, and so will be inclined to make an offer they believe that the Rox will not match. If you believe that Bev will get paid, then going after Bledsoe less of gamble, though I agree it is still a really significant risk. I am presuming the Rox wouldn't have to gut their current team, but just give up their non-guaranteed contracts.

  • Buckko says 1 month ago The nicks are going big game hunting so I doubt Beverley is their top choice when there is rondo, dragic, maybe Bledose on the market in a PG stacked league. Beverley will not be paid like parsons. I am against the team gutting for a player with bad knees.
  • timetodienow1234567 says 1 month ago Anything more than 5-6 mil for Bev would be overpaying.
  • Johnny Rocket says 1 month ago

    I'm glad you're doing this series, Rahat; I was curious about your views of this subject. Just a few semi-random thoughts:

    1) Bev will be next year's Parsons. He's a great fit for the Rox and a great value at his current contract, but next year he'll get paid in restricted free agency (Phil Jackson might well see Bev as this generation's Derrick Fischer) and become a lot less appealing.

    2) Bledsoe has something that neither Parsons nor Bev have: serious upside.

    3) Bledsoe can create and is an excellent defender. That's a rare commodity in the NBA.

    4) If you are Morey, do you risk your career on Bledsoe? There are two separate bets: 1) Bledsoe stays healthy; and 2) he reaches his full potential/upside that was demonstrated last year.