The Rockets apparently added one power forward to their lineup Wednesday after Josh Smith cleared waivers, and Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle reports that another one may be on the way. “Terrence Jones has been able to do some stuff that honestly he hasn’t been able to do since that thing happened,” said coach Kevin McHale, referring to the nerve problem in Jones’ knee that has kept him out of the lineup since November 3rd. “I was excited just to see Terrence with a smile on his face. He ran on the treadmill. He ran on the floor. He’s been jumping a little bit. I don’t know when – it’s not imminent – that’s just like making a trade for a really quality player and not giving anything up.”
There’s more from an eventful day in H-Town:
- Smith, who committed to joining the Rockets Wednesday afternoon, told Amin Elhassan of ESPN.com that he plans to help his new team in several ways. “I think I can add to their toughness,” Smith said. “I think I can add to their versatility at the four position, being able to pass the basketball and score the ball down low. Just add another basketball IQ, which will help when we make it to the postseason.” Smith is also looking forward to playing alongside James Harden, whom he called “the best two-guard in the game right now.”
- Smith is a perfect fit in Houston, opines Avery Stone of USA Today. Stone likes the match because of Smith’s elite defensive skills, his ability to finish in transition and the Rockets’ lack of a proven NBA power forward.
- Rookie center Clint Capela was recalled Wednesday from the team’s Rio Grande Valley affiliate in the D-League, according to a tweet by Feigen. Capela was sent there December 17th after getting little playing time in his latest two-week stint with the Rockets despite injuries to Jones, Dwight Howard and Kostas Papanikolaou.
- The Rockets were among the teams that pursued James Johnson last summer before he landed in Toronto, according to Shams Charania of Real GM. The Grizzlies and Jazz also requested meetings with the free agent forward, who signed a two-year deal with the Raptors worth $2.5MM per season. Houston also had interest last season before he left the D-League and signed with Memphis.