Rockets 2021-2021 roster review: David Nwaba

By on May 24, 2021 0

Once the 2020-21 season is over, the Rockets will begin evaluating their roster. It will take a while. The season ended with 19 players on the roster, including two hardship exemption additions needed just to have eight players available. On the way to 17-55, the Rockets played an NBA record 30 players, used 43 starting lineups, and from early December to the trade deadline, made four trades involving 13 players that drastically changed the l ‘team.

They’re heading into the offseason with 10 players under contract and options ranging from bird rights to restricted free agency over the rest. But first, a daily look at the Rockets roster.

DAVID NWABA

Position: Guard / Forward
Age: 28
Contract: Free agent
Key Statistics: On average, a career-high 9.2 points per game, making 48.6% of his shots and 27% of his 3s in 22.6 minutes per game.

Looking back: Nwaba was one of the players the Rockets desperately missed as injuries came through the season, having brought a defensive toughness and versatility they lacked. Ahead of a late-season right wrist injury that required surgery, he insisted on playing southpaw as the Rockets were desperately shorthanded, making 5 of 8 shots against Utah. Nwaba showed no signs of Achilles’ injury which ended his 2019-20 season and made him available to the Rockets as a free agent, which made his wrist injury during the ‘a particularly frustrating dunk against the Grizzlies. His offensive play seemed to come before he was injured. He has managed 52.2% of his shots in his last 18 games after shooting 43.2% in his first 12 games of the season. But his 3-point shot, at a career-high 42.9% in his last season with the Nets, has never returned to that level.

Looking forward: Nwaba played in just 30 games before it became clear he couldn’t continue playing due to his wrist injury and he opted for surgery. Before going out, he showed signs that he’s the kind of two-way player the Rockets have been trying to collect, especially if his 3-point shot happens. The timing of the surgery will allow Nwaba to have a full offseason to recover and train and be ready for the start of training camp. Because he signed a two-year contract before the 2019-20 restart, even though he was injured, the Rockets have early rights to his contract. That would allow them to sign him for up to 175% of his $ 1.824 million contract or the average NBA contract, whichever is greater, making him a particularly attractive option among their own free agents. As with many decisions, it could depend on how the draft and other free agent moves go, but Nwaba could still hold on as long as he was missed.

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