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Rockets have the best big three in the NBA

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by Clips/Roxfan, Aug 7, 2019.

  1. Clips/Roxfan

    Clips/Roxfan Member
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    Ranking NBA's Best Big 3s Post-Free Agency

    Andy Bailey

    [​IMG]744 × 1200


    1. Houston Rockets
    10 of 10






      • [​IMG]
        David J. Phillip/Associated Press
        Projected Wins Above Replacement: 27.1
        • James Harden 15.4
        • Russell Westbrook 8.5
        • Clint Capela 3.2
        James Harden's 15.4 mark by itself would've put him in a tie with the Nets for 11th on this list.

        As absurd as that sounds, he's on a nearly unprecedented three-year run. Russell Westbrook's 12.3 (2015 to 2017), LeBron James' 12.2 (2008 to 2010) and Michael Jordan's 11.8 (1988 to 1990) are the only three-year peak box plus/minuses that top the 10.9 Harden's put up since the start of the 2016-17 season.

        The 11.7 he posted in 2018-19 alone ranks seventh all-time.

        After Harden averaged 36.1 points, 7.5 assists, 6.6 rebounds, 4.8 threes and 2.0 steals in 2018-19, it's hard to imagine he'll push the envelope much further, but perhaps re-teaming with Russell Westbrook will unlock something in him.

        Much has been made of how difficult it will be for two of the highest-usage players of all time to jell. Those concerns are valid. But if Harden spends a few possessions off the ball, it might also boost his already stellar efficiency.

        Last season, Harden used 1.1 possessions per game as a spot-up shooter. He scored 1.19 points per spot-up possession, which put him in the 91st percentile.

        In isolation, he used 16.4 possessions per game and scored 1.11 points per possession (93rd percentile).

        Exchanging a few of those isos for some more catch-and-shoot opportunities wouldn't just offer the chance at a slight uptick in overall efficiency, it would also make the Rockets a little less predictable.

        "I'm not a believer that a predictable offense that basically runs the same thing, that lacks player movement, is really the way to win in basketball," ESPN's Tim Legler said. "I just don't believe that's the style."

        In 2018-19, the Houston Rockets used 1,840 possessions in isolation, nearly 1,000 more than second-place OKC.

        Now, the fact that Westbrook's old team is second is a little worrisome—as is Westbrook's No. 2 status individually—but this change in personnel should be an excuse for Mike D'Antoni to shake up the system.

        This level of iso-ball has probably run its course, and it won't be near as efficient if Westbrook's part of it. He was in the 31st percentile in points per isolation possession last season.

        But Russ can still get to the paint nearly at will. When he does that, Harden should move off the ball (an adjustment) and rack up catch-and-shoot buckets.

        In the middle of all of it, they'll still have Clint Capela's rim rolling, lob catching and defense. He should provide some inward gravity, but he and Westbrook on the same team means there will be at least two non-shooters on the floor in most lineups.

        If there are spacing issues, or Harden and Westbrook don't adapt, this could go poorly. But in terms of pure talent and raw numbers, this Big Three includes two of the most productive players ever and a still-improving big man.

        Houston has had its shots at the title over the last few years. The 2019-20 campaign feels like the all-in bet.



        Statistics courtesy of NBA.com, Basketball Reference and Cleaning the Glass unless otherwise noted.
     
  2. Os Trigonum

    Os Trigonum It. Deserves. Its. Own. Thread.
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  3. LosPollosHermanos

    LosPollosHermanos We miss u Chris
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  4. topfive

    topfive CF OG
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    The talent is there. They just have to find a way to utilize it properly.
     
  5. sammy

    sammy Contributing Member

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    hatin ass.. move on
     
  6. Verbal Christ

    Verbal Christ Member

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    Pffff CPOF's cant seem to get any enjoyment from the buildup. Even when the numbers bust a nut all over their faces. MMmmmm. Stats.
     
    D-rock likes this.
  7. LosPollosHermanos

    LosPollosHermanos We miss u Chris
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    I have no doubt about talent. But like you said.
     
  8. topfive

    topfive CF OG
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    I also happen to think Westbrook has been hurt by having two shitty coaches. Maybe MDA will Nash him. :)
     
  9. Reeko

    Reeko Member

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    damn, 31st percentile in ISO for Russ...that’s atrocious
     
  10. Nook

    Nook Member

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  11. bilaal14

    bilaal14 Member

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    We will have a big 3 right when CC15 decides to grow a pair and learn to bang with the big boys.
     
  12. smoothie

    smoothie Contributing Member
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    mostly because of the volume and inefficiency of his mid range pull up and off the dribble 3's.

    his efficiency in isos that end with shots in the paint or assisting off iso is elite. frankly he just needs to play more moreyball.
     
    Elephant810, hakeem94 and Remlap like this.
  13. topfive

    topfive CF OG
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    Clint does GREAT against the big boys (Gobert, KAT, etc.). It's the small-ball lineups he struggles against.
     
  14. smoothie

    smoothie Contributing Member
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    if i was going just on numbers i'd wonder about a gordon/tucker package for someone like aaron gordon. we'd have the best big 4 in the league with only the warriors coming close when klay gets back to 100% next year.
     
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  15. icewill36

    icewill36 Member

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    Wtf why does this board constantly bring up AARON Gordon????
     
  16. Acura

    Acura Member

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    This team doesn’t have a big 3 and doesn’t need one. Get is a legit power forward and let’s go to war. pJ is gonna have too much on his shoulders trying to play PF.
     
    MrSabotage, D-rock, ak99999 and 2 others like this.
  17. s3ts

    s3ts Member

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    i have to see how Capela does against Kevon Looney first.

    i mean, this past playoffs was way too embarrassing for Capela to say he's really that good. talked trash and got owned.
     
  18. Deuce

    Deuce Context & Nuance
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    Just a reminder when the season starts and ESPN ranks the Rockets low.
     
  19. Deuce

    Deuce Context & Nuance
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  20. Acura

    Acura Member

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    No doubt Clint is gonna eat this season
     
    Lawlruschang likes this.
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