Rockets fans finally have an answer. After mixing and matching different combinations of players over the preseason, it seems like Kevin McHale has decided to stick with the starting lineup from the last two preseason games. Patrick Beverley will get the start at point guard and the Rockets will go with the Omer Asik and Dwight Howard combination in the front-court. James Harden and Chandler Parsons will fill out the rest of the starting lineup.
— AdamWexlerCSN (@awexler) October 29, 2013
Assuming Parsons was telling the truth, the starting lineup should definitely be one of the best defensive lineups in the league. Both Asik and Howard are elite defenders in the paint and elite rebounders. Beverley has a reputation of being a fierce defender and is one of the best defenders at his position. Parsons has great defensive skills as well and will always be responsible for the opponent’s premiere player. Harden has some potential on defense though isn’t considered any better than an average defender at best.
With those five in the starting rotation, it seems as if the Rockets will have just three players come off the bench for the time being. Jeremy Lin will be the team’s six-man. Lin will likely average over 25 minutes a game and be the main ball-handler off the bench. Omri Casspi will be relied on as the backup power forward and three-point shooter. Francisco Garcia will also see playing time as a three-point specialist off the bench. The Rockets have more options off the bench from the power forward spot if they choose, but I don’t expect any to crack the rotation early in the season. Terrence Jones, Donatas Motiejunas, and Greg Smith are all options to get playing time if Asik or Howard got in early foul trouble.
The Rockets open their season against the Charlotte Bobcats on Wednesday at 7:00 PM on CSN Houston.