At least for depth purposes, the Houston Rockets should consider bringing Vince Carter intot the fold. Why? Let’s talk about it some more.
The Houston Rockets have come out the All-Star Break with a roaring start with most of the team being relatively healthy and they’ve won two of their first three games since.
James Harden is likely not 100 percent but is playing through the neck injury that he sustained over practice late last week and ultimately I think he’ll be okay as he plays through it. It’s just that neck injuries aren’t the best for basketball players because it’s such an important body tool for vision and the multitude of lateral movements that are made on the hardwood.
His streak of scoring 30 points or more in games came to end last night at 32 of those straight. He just was just shy of it by scoring 28 and it seems that the injury has had little impact on his production. He also had five other guys score in double-figures last night in Chris Paul (20), Eric Gordon (16), Kenneth Faried (13), Clint Capela (12) and Gerald Green (11).
As with the match up against the Golden State Warriors Saturday night, the rest of the Houston Rockets are stepping up in Harden’s stead, giving him the help that he so deserves. It’s actually quite refreshing to watch.
But any way, as the Houston Rockets were taking on the Atlanta Hawks last night, I noticed an important fixture who has been in the NBA for the past 21 seasons on team that’s surely headed for the lottery at the end of this season.
It’s been a long journey for the 42-year-old forward and I still recall his high-flying days with the Toronto Raptors when he was certainly in the prime of career. He accentuated the 2000 NBA Dunk Contest and his “arm-in-net” dunk will forever be shown in highlight reels to come and be respected as one of the greatest dunks to ever be created.
Even Hamidou Diallo gave a sort of “tip-of-the-cap” with his concoction this past All-Star Saturday Night by closing out his dunk the same way after jumping — or using him as a trampoline, whatever your perspective — over 7-foot-1 Shaquille O’Neal.
He truly has left quite a legacy in the modern Association as we know it but he still has yet to secure a championship.
At least for depth purposes, I think the Houston Rockets should look into bringing Carter into the fold.
I wouldn’t expect him to get a ton of minutes but I think 10 per game is reasonable.
He’s still desired on NBA rosters. Carter is currently the eldest player in the NBA but he’s been able to hold that title because of his ability to adapt with changes to the NBA. The pace has gotten faster, the three-pointers have been more prolific and Carter has been there every step of the way, rolling with the punches.
Carter can still hit the three-ball with precision and with frequent attempts — he’s averaging 1.4
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makes and 3.6 attempts per game this season for a 39.1 percent clip from behind-the-arc.
He’s also shooting 43.5 percent from the corner — the area of the line closest to the basket — where 11.4 percent of those attempts come from that area.
Although his defense isn’t as fierce as it once was but I think he can commit to it profusely in the short spurts that he’d asked to play. He’s currently at a 114 defensive rating per 100 possessions with the Hawks, where there seems to be a culture where playing defense is optional.
He can still grab a few boards for you and score at will when he’s open. Yes, I acknowledge that he’s no Danuel House, which is the perfect fit for the team but I think Carter — who has no plans to retire — has enough in the tank to help this team win a championship this season.
I’m not looking for anything long-term from Carter — as he’s at the twilight of his career — but he’d be a nice rental for the rest of 2018-19.
I’m positive if Daryl Morey picked up the phone to call Travis Schlenk for Carter, I’m positive the latter would oblige. The question is will he? At least I think Morey should.
Carter signed a one-year deal with the Hawks this off season worth $2.4 million and the remaining portion of his salary — depending on how much he could be bought out for — is definitely workable in the Houston Rockets salary cap picture.
Carter has averaged 6.6 points, 2.5 rebounds and 15.6 minutes per game while shooting 43.1 percent from the field and 67.5 from the charity stripe through 56 games — eight starts — this season.