While the Pelicans made the biggest move heading into the NBA’s trade deadline by acquiring DeMarcus Cousins, the Rockets quietly addressed a need by turning Corey Brewer and a first-round pick into Lou Williams.
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It might seem redundant for a team as good as the Rockets are offensively to acquire someone known mainly for their scoring ability — Williams is averaging a career-high 18.6 points per game this season and checks out as one of the worst defensive guards in the NBA by advanced metrics — but there are three reasons in particular why they walked away from the deal as winners. From his fit with James Harden to how Williams helps their second unit, let’s take a look at each of them in detail.
A big reason for Nurkic’s success in Portland is he gives the Blazers an inside-out element they’ve been missing for quite some time. While they’ve always been a team built around the offensive firepower of C.J. McCollum and Lillard, he’s another scoring threat opposing teams have to respect in the half court. Nurkic is averaging 15.0 points and 10.4 rebounds in 29.1 minutes per game with the Blazers, which puts him in the top 10 for both scoring and rebounding amongst centers this season. Extend those numbers to 36 minutes, and they jump to a dominant 18.6 points and 12.8 rebounds per game.
Mens Trey Hendrickson Jersey For what it’s worth, of centers who have played at least 30 games this season, only Clint Capela, Andre Drummond, Nikola Jokic, Hassan Whiteside and Nikola Vucevic are averaging at least 17 points and 12 rebounds per 36 minutes.