Houston Rockets: Jeff Green is elevating himself within the rotation

Houston Rockets forward Jeff Green (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
Houston Rockets forward Jeff Green (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images) /

Houston Rockets forward Jeff Green has been a terrific sign as a free agent and is quickly gobbling minutes from other guys. What gives? Let’s take a look.

The Houston Rockets are trying to break a three-game skid tonight against the Orlando Magic and get back to making inroads as far as their standing in the Western Conference.  The race to the finish line will be fierce with the No. 2-7 seeds all up for grabs and it’s quite possible for the Houston Rockets to elevate themselves all the way up to No. 2.

There is some positivity to the small ball that the Houston Rockets are playing but when it backfires, it’s not anything to write home about.  They were flying high in the weeks succeeding the trade deadline when Clint Capela was essentially flipped for Robert Covington.

But now as teams have figured out how to stop the Houston Rockets, this makes them vulnerable to each matchup that they take.  James Harden‘s infamous floaters are being contested more because there’s not a domineering presence in the paint that Capela had to be on the receiving end of a lob.

This has stymied things a bit but the positive is that it has opened up the lanes more for Russell Westbrook to drive into the paint because he’s nearly unstoppable once he gets up to full speed.  If you try to stop him, he’ll make you pay by having you draw a foul.

But you know what?  The acquisition of Jeff Green via free agency has to be one of the best

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underrated signings that Daryl Morey has ever made.  He fits so well in this system and Mike D’Antoni is rewarding him with minutes as a result.

He plays terrific on both ends of the floor and his newfound energy is something that I haven’t seen out of 33-year-old in quite some time.  The workouts he was doing in Miami while waiting for an opportunity has helped his conditioning plenty.

He wipes the glass clean, works hard to make the extra play on defense…you know…all the things a coach asks out of a role player.

Green logged 29 minutes last night against the Charlotte Hornets — the most as a Rocket so far — and he was able to chip in 20 points, eight rebounds, three steals and one heck of a block to boot.

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This is the point of no return for Green, who’s proving that his career is far from over and has plenty in the tank to help any given team, let alone the Houston Rockets.

I’m happy for his success and I hope it continues!

Green’s shooting line is .615/.444/.875 through eight games with the Rockets so far.