3:35pm: The Rockets have officially signed Patton to a two-way contract, the team announced in a press release.
7:15am: The Rockets will fill their open two-way contract slot by promoting a center from the G League, according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype, who hears from agent Brian Jungreis that Justin Patton has agreed to a two-way deal with Houston.
Patton, 23, was the 16th overall pick in the 2016 draft, but was limited to just nine NBA games across his first three seasons in the NBA with the Timberwolves, Sixers, and Thunder due in large part to injuries, including broken bones in both feet.
The big man has seen more action at the G League level, appearing in 83 total NBAGL games since 2017/18. He was selected in the first round of this year’s G League draft by the Westchester Knicks and has played in four games for the club, averaging 10.0 PPG, 6.8 RPG, and 1.8 BPG in 21.5 minutes per contest.
The Rockets opened up one of their two-way spots earlier this week when they waived Ray Spalding, who suffered an Achilles injury in just his second game with the club. That was the latest blow to a Houston frontcourt that has had some bad injury luck lately — Christian Wood has been on the shelf with an ankle sprain for two weeks, while a quad issue has sidelined P.J. Tucker for the last two games.
[RELATED: 2020/21 NBA Two-Way Contract Tracker]
It’s possible Patton will see some action in the Rockets’ depleted frontcourt in the short term. Once he officially signs, we should get a better sense of whether Houston intends to keep him with the NBA squad for a little while or if he’ll report to the Rio Grande Valley Vipers before the G League season ends in March.