Houston Rockets: Luis Scola Giving Fans Reasons To Forget Carl Landry

Jeff ShullAnalyst IMarch 10, 2010

ATLANTA - NOVEMBER 20:  Luis Scola #4 of the Houston Rockets against the Atlanta Hawks at Philips Arena on November 20, 2009 in Atlanta, Georgia.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

With recent dominating performances from Luis Scola, he has fans quickly forgetting about having to give up Carl Landry for Kevin Martin.

Scola is reminding everyone why he was the starter, and Landry was the 6th man. Many thought it should be the other way around, but that clearly is not the case.

Scola's numbers have not been anywhere near as good as one thought they would be after Yao Ming got hurt, but that is because he has just been accepting his new role which didn't require him to the be No. 1 option.

With Aaron Brooks and Trevor Ariza emerging as huge scoring threats, the need for Scola to be dominant just hasn't been there. He has been his usual self defensively and scrappy-wise, but until now he hasn't been called upon for points.

The reason Landry was looking so good is because he would get the bulk of his points with the second unit and then coach Rick Adelman would leave him in with the starters in the fourth quarter because he knew how effective Landry is because he always had energy at that point.

Landry will most certainly be missed and he is a great player, but Luis Scola is proving he can be just as every bit as good as Landry and more.

Now that Landry is gone and Ariza had been hurt, Scola felt compelled to remind people of that.

He even did so again when Ariza came back last night.

His most recent performance was against the Wizards yesterday, when he posted 23 points and 10 rebounds in a 96-88 win on the road.

I forgot how awesome it was to watch Scola work in the paint until I had the privilege to go to the game against the Kings last Wednesday. That game was unreal as the Rockets lost despite the Kings shooting 32 for 100. That is another tale for a different day (24 offensive rebounds...what the heck?!?).

Scola is so creative down low with his spin moves and fakes, it's like watching a ballet on the basketball court.

Despite being a bit undersized at 6'9'' (listed at 6'10'', but I'm skeptical), he uses every move in his arsenal to get the defender away from him and score inside. 

Kevin Martin seems to be hitting a groove after his awful debut with the Rockets, as he scored 21 points in the victory. The Rockets move back over .500 and could look to steal the last playoff spot from San Antonio who just lost Tony Parker for basically the rest of the season.

The Rockets will need to get momentum and improve at playing consistently better; they have alternated wins and losses in their last seven games.

The Western Conference is about as tough as it has been the last few years, maybe more so, and the Rockets can ill afford to play .500 ball the rest of the way.

Jordan Hill seems to be getting more and more playing time, and knotted 11 points with eight rebounds. His role could play a huge part in a playoff push, as the Rockets are looking for any one of the front court players to step up.

Jared Jeffries started out hot when he was traded from the Knicks, but has cooled off and is getting less playing time in lieu of Hill.

Hopefully the Rockets can build some momentum and be that final team in the West. I can dream.


Jeff Shull writes for the Rockets blog on Fan Huddle, you can view the article here as well.