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D-Mo is just one of several guys that is underrated for the Rockets.
The biggest reason analysts expect Houston to drop off is because of all the key departures. Some significant role players are gone and replacing them is a major concern.
The Rockets let Parsons sign on with the Mavs, and they brought in Trevor Ariza for nearly half the price. A lot of people would consider this a downgrade, but upon closer examination, it's not as worrisome as it seems. Although Parsons is a better playmaker, Ariza is an improvement in terms of defense and three-point shooting, which may be more advantageous for Houston down the road.
Lin and Asik will have new homes as well this season. These two guys were the first ones of the bench for the Rockets last year, but again, the losses aren't as concerning as you might think.
Lin is a talented guard, yet he was wildly inconsistent last year. Sure he had his shining moments, but he also had those times where he left us scratching our heads. I hope he succeeds in his future endeavors, but realistically, Lin is replaceable and for a much cheaper price.
Patrick Beverley will still be the starter and a leader for this team. Houston also brought in Ish Smith, and Isaiah Canaan just had a mesmerizing summer league in Las Vegas. Point guard, although not great, has not gotten any worse with Lin's departure. Plus, all three of those guys are making less than $1 million next season while Lin is making $15 million, so do the math.
Asik was a bigger loss in my opinion. He is an elite defensive center that doesn't come around too often. However, like Lin, the Rockets will be just fine without him. First of all, he only played in 48 games last season, and many of those were in garbage time because of his trade request. Secondly, the Rockets have some quality backup big men that may surprise you.
Just like Canaan, Donatas Motiejunas had a superb summer in Las Vegas. He made first-team All-NBA summer league averaging 16.8 points and 8.1 boards per game. The best part is he shot nearly 60 percent from the floor and over 40 percent from deep. D-Mo could step into a much bigger role this year, and even though he's not a great defender, he is light years ahead of Asik on the offensive end.
Houston also signed Joey Dorsey, who has spent the last few seasons dominating in Europe specializing in defense and rebounding, which the Rockets need.
Other guys on the bench like Troy Daniels, Robert Covington and Nick Johnson are not household names but that doesn't mean they can't play. Daniels proved he can contribute, even in the clutch, and the other two can also sneak up on you and become key contributors this season.