Rockets starting point guard Kevin Porter Jr. continues to develop for a rebuilding Houston club, writes Kelly Iko of The Athletic. Iko notes that Porter has developed right along with his head coach Stephen Silas, both of whom are in the midst of their third season with the team.
“We’ve really been on the same page this season when it comes to [Porter executing Silas’ offensive schemes],” Silas said. “A lot of it is his comfort with me, my comfort with him, comfort with his teammates. And it continues to grow as we go along.”
“From an emotional standpoint, he’s grown a lot from last year to this year,” starting Rockets shooting guard Jalen Green added. “He’s become more of a leader and a point guard — getting us involved and making sure everyone gets their shots. Being that person to take control of a game towards the end, too. He’s had a lot of growth.”
“Just me being out there finding my balance,” Porter told Iko, explaining how his instincts have improved. “[Knowing] when to take shots, when to facilitate, where guys are supposed to be at. Me just learning how to read the defense, I feel like I’ve been getting better at that. And it’s been much easier to get my guys the ball that way. Just reading the help defense and not so focused on who’s guarding me. But seeing on the second hand, help side defense, the low man, that’s what I’ve been paying attention to. And it’s been a lot easier making reads.”
There’s more out of H-Town:
- Rockets general manager Rafael Stone is happy with Houston’s growth thus far this season, per Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle. Though the team’s development has yet to yield much of an uptick in wins, the club’s leading front office executive is positive about how his players have improved year-over-year. “It feels like we’re pretty on track,” Stone said. “We’ve seen a lot of good things. We’ve seen a lot of growth from a lot of different players. We’ve seen some team growth, too. Sitting here right now, at a really early stage, we feel comfortable that we’re talented and our guys are really hardworking, which is, from a macro perspective, our two largest goals. (Last season’s draft picks) are materially better basketball players this year than they were last year. I think that’s evident when you watch them. Their weaknesses are not as weak, and their strengths are stronger. They’re far from finished products. We’re really happy with all our young guys.”
- Rockets rookie Josh Christopher was recently sent to the team’s G League club for in-game reps, having not been able to quite crack Houston’s rotation for the first quarter of the 2022/23 season. Head coach Stephen Silas applauded his play for the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, writes Feigen in a separate piece. “He needed some minutes he needed to get out there and play when he needed to get this confidence back and just let it flow a little bit,” Silas said. “He had a great game (Friday) night. But we talked a bunch of conversations about it, and we value him so much that for him to get out of rhythm and for him to get spot minutes here and there, it made sense for him to be able to go on back-to-back and play a couple games or so for the Vipers… So, yeah, it’s not a demotion at all and he doesn’t see it as a demotion. But sometimes they can see it as a demotion. So, his perspective, his personality, everything about him is really good.”
- Rockets assistant John Lucas is set to step in tonight as acting head coach against the Bucks for Silas, reports Mark Berman of Fox Sports 26 Houston (Twitter link). As we wrote earlier, Silas’ father, former player and coach Paul Silas, has just passed away at age 79.