Rockets Notes: Cousins, Wall, Porter, Draft Pick

After putting up his best numbers in several years Saturday night, DeMarcus Cousins admitted there were times when he wasn’t sure he would ever play again, writes Tim MacMahon of ESPN. Cousins, who has suffered three major injuries in the past four years, had 28 points, 17 rebounds and five assists as the short-handed Rockets won in Dallas.

“It’s just proof that the work is working,” he said. “The work, the time, the effort, those days I didn’t want to get up and do it, the days I thought I was wasting my time, the dog days I thought it was over for me — all of those thoughts at some point flashed in my mind. I would be lying if I didn’t have those moments, but just continue to believe in myself.”

Cousins didn’t play at all last season because of a torn ACL and was limited to 30 games with the Warriors in 2018/19 after tearing his quadriceps. He came to Houston on a non-guaranteed veteran’s minimum contract, but hasn’t looked like a former All-Star, shooting just 26.3% from the field before last night.

“I told him it’s a process,” said Rockets guard John Wall. “I mean, I know it’s difficult from being that franchise guy and always being the guy that was dominant and having the game the way you want it to be, and now he has to accept the role of coming off the bench.”

There’s more from Houston:

  • Wall returned ahead of schedule Saturday after missing five games with soreness in his left knee, notes Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle. Coming off a two-year absence, the veteran guard doesn’t want to get the reputation of being susceptible to injuries. “It was frustrating because I deal with so much, people say, ‘He’s injury prone,’” Wall said. “I got kneed. You have inflammation, you can’t control that. There was nothing I can do.”
  • The Rockets plan to be cautious with Kevin Porter Jr., who was acquired Friday in a trade with the Cavaliers, MacMahon tweets. Porter’s talent is obvious, but he fell out of favor in Cleveland because of off-the-court issues. “I wouldn’t anticipate him playing in an NBA game relatively soon,” coach Stephen Silas said. Houston added Porter with the $1.62MM trade exception it created last February by sending Gerald Green to Denver, confirms Bobby Marks of ESPN (Twitter link).
  • The Rockets placed heavy protections on the 2024 second-round pick they sent to the Cavaliers in the deal, but it was originally unprotected when they acquired it from Golden State, Marks tweets. Cleveland will only receive the pick if it falls in the 56-to-60 range. Otherwise it’ll remain with Houston.
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20 thoughts on “Rockets Notes: Cousins, Wall, Porter, Draft Pick

  1. phillyballers

    Boogie should have made it work I Sacramento, would have had a huge contract. His ego has been his just as much to blame as his injuries. But from a pure talent and skillset, loved Boogies play. I don’t think you can play him more than 70% of the games tho, hes bound to get reinjured.

  2. Sillivan

    2021 four team first round swaps if
    Final Standings
    Rockets finish with 5th worst
    Thunder finish with 10th worst
    Heat 20th worst
    Nets 25th worst

    Draft pick Result
    Thunder get 5th pick
    Heat get 10th pick
    Rockets get 20th pick
    Nets get 25th pick

    Just what I think

  3. justinkm19

    Short handed Rockets. The Mavs were without 7 players, three starters, including KP.

    • Walladipo and Wood

      Dallas used 12 players against Houston, they were only missing 5 (DFS, KP, Richardson, Kleber, and Powell). The Rockets also used 12 players and were without 3 starters including two of their top three scorers (Wood and Oladipo) plus Danuel House. And also two others Dante Exum (injured) and newly acquired Kevin Porter.

      Sure all 5 guys missing for Dallas were rotation players, but since Houston was also without two of its top 3 scorers they were almost as short-handed as the Mavs and still won by 25 points.

      • justinkm19

        Not even close. Second night of a back to back for both teams. Depth came into play more than ever. We’ve lost 4 games since out of 7 since the depth is out with COVID. Mavs are a better team. You’ll see at the end of the year.

      • justinkm19

        Mavs were also without their 3 best defenders and their second best player. The comparison isn’t close.

        • goastros123

          Mavericks ARE a better team but the Rockets were just as short-handed. Objectively speaking, the comparison is close because Dallas had it’s best player (Luka) active while Houston’s best player (Wood) was out. In general, both teams were missing key players.

            • goastros123

              You’re intentionally missing the point: Wood is Houston’s best player right now and they did not have him for that game. Meanwhile, the Mavericks had Luka, who is their best player as well as a better player than any one on the Rockets.

            • goastros123

              Is Luka not the best player on the Mavericks? Is he not a star on the rise? Is he not a better player than Wood, who happens to be Houston’s best player this season? Was he not active during that game while Wood was out?

    • formerlyz

      I mean…Dallas still has enough. I struggled with the Houston +7 line, and just barely switched to them last second. It was going to be relatively close otherwise, but the literal difference in the game was Cousins having his big game, when he has been terrible all year (me refusing to believe he can be as inept as he has been is why I ultimately went with Houston, and it worked out)

      • justinkm19

        The difference was all of their average shooters shooting well in the first half. Gordon excluded. He’s a good shooter. Just one of those games…

  4. KnickerbockerAl

    No reason to push Cousins. He had a great game. 3 major injuries in 4 yrs. For a guy his size. I’d be very careful with his mins. IMO he should be a backup for rest his career. Spot starter when your down players I get. He can be a great boy g coming off bench 22-28 mins. Sit him when you don’t need him. You load manage his game. He can play a long time. He’s a great backup for Wood.

    • Walladipo and Wood

      This was the team’s first back-to-back of the season and Boogie only played (and started) both games because of Wood’s sprained ankle. Houston has already been extremely cautious with John Wall and also held out Oladipo on the second night of the B2B. They have enough depth to be just as cautious with Cousins in their upcoming B2B’s and when Wood returns to the lineup Boogie will likely average just 15-20 MPG.

  5. phenomenalajs

    If it’s a 2024 2nd round pick based on Golden State’s positioning in the 2023-2024 season, there’s an outside chance Cleveland could get it Steph & Klay are still there and healthy along with added pieces. I know it was just a chip to make the trade legal.

    • Walladipo and Wood

      Golden State being a top 5 team in 2024? Chances are slim at best.

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