Rockets mid-season report

The Rockets surprised most observers with a tremendous first half to the 2016-17 NBA Season. As the league shifts to the majority of teams now playing with "four out" and "one in", it made perfect sense to bring in the head coach that popularized that style in professional basketball in the USA. Mike D'Antoni and his system that insists on utilizing a 'stretch four' is being aided by the elite play of James Harden. Is it possible for the Rockets to be be even better now? Are they in touch with reality? Who are the five most efficient at each position? And, which players have defensive ratings better than the team defrtg? These are the questions we will answer in our Hoop Obsession mid-season report.

Harden is an MVP contender.

James Harden is playing spectacular basketball, averaging 28.6 points 11.8 assists, and 8.3 rebounds per game. The Rockets are 31-10 at the halfway point of the NBA season.

The only weakness we see in the Rockets is at the backup wing position, where Corey Brewer struggles to hit three-point shots (23% 3-pt.), and his defensive rating has slipped a bit.

The Rockets may be at their best when Patrick Beverley and Harden play together, allowing Harden to produce at his more natural two-guard position. Harden's assist-to-turnover ratio is 2.05-to-1, which is excellent for a two-guard but really not that great for a NBA point guard.

Clint Capela is the Rockets best BIG but he broke his leg and is out indefinitely. The Rockets have solid depth however with Montrezl Harrell, and Nene holding things down until Capela returns.

Are the Rockets in touch with their reality?

The Rockets seem to always be in touch with their reality. Their General manager, Daryl Morey is as sharp as they come. Signing on Jeff Bzdelik to coach the defense of a Mike D'Antoni led team was nothing short of a brilliant hire. The defensive minded Bzdelik has James Harden playing D at a rate better than the team average.

Five most efficient by position

PG - Beverley .500, SG - Harden .891, SF - Ariza .443, PF - Dekker .463, C - Capela 697.

Which players have defensive ratings better than the team defrtg?

The Rockets TEAM defensive rating is 108.1 (17th of 30). The players with defensive ratings better than the team average: Clint Capela 105, Trevor Ariza 106, Patrick Beverley 107, James Harden 107, and Nene 107.

Conclusions

NBA related. Trade targets.

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