Posted 01 November 2012 - 07:57 PM
I think the Pairing of Lin and Harden works really well. Lin loves to slash and kick out to shooters and Harden loves to do the same. Once Lin establishes he is a consistent three point threat the lane will open up for both of them. (Parsons needs to start nailing some threes as well.) Miami's game works because they have excellent three point shooting at three positions at all times. So what we need is a PF that can step back and hit a three while also being a consistent threat in the mid-range game. (this is my best guess as to why Marcus Morris was in the game other then McHale playing him out of spite)
1. Patterson. From all accounts spent the summer working on his shooting stroke and his post game. If he can finish at the rim while making around 50% of his long 2s expect to see him as the starting 4 all season. His defense is miles ahead of everyone else's and as we saw last night, we need lots more D at the 4.
2. Jones. 3-point range, slashing ability, tons of athleticism? All checks. Now here is the hard part, he doesn't know the schemes on offense or defense well enough for McHale to give him significant minutes. So until Morey trades everyone that can start over Jones (remember that scene in Money ball?) I expect him to see him coming off the bench as the first or second big. So lets all hope Jones likes to study, like A LOT.
3. D-Mo. This is the guy I want to see prove he belongs. If he can withstand the physicality of the NBA game I think he becomes a great stretch 4/small ball 5. He has the range and post moves now he just needs to translate it to the NBA. Plus when the starters come out we can unleash some small ball action where all 5 positions can shoot it from anywhere on the floor. (This is again dependent on McHale being able to stomach a lot of defensive mistakes from our young guys. Which he seems very unwilling to do)
4. White. Man how far his star has fallen since draft night. Remember when he was supposed to run the team through the post a la finals Lebron? I honestly believe the Harden acquisition hurt Royce more then any other big guy. He looked a little smaller and a little slower then a lot of his competition in the preseason, which meant he was going to have to really shine with his passing and play making ability. But now that we have Harden creating so well the need for that skill has diminished significantly. Now that the team isn't starved for play making I don't expect to see White receive meaningful minutes this year. Realistically, the Rockets have three years to see if White can improve his athleticism and outside shooting. But for this year I see White spending a lot of time in the D-league unless he has an Ah Ha moment and just puts it all together.
I think the most likely scenario is Morey playing it out with his troop of 4's. Yes he found his corner stone in a trade. But with this much talent on rookie scale contracts Les Alexander's wallet is probably telling him to play out the season and see where our bigs end up.