The Houston Rockets have two picks in the 2023 NBA Draft, and both are within the top 20 selections. They’re coming off a season where they finished with a 22-60 record, which was tied for the second worst in the league. They’re starting the first season with Ime Udoka as the head coach, replacing Stephen Silas.
The Rockets were pretty awful as a team last season, but they have some building blocks to work with especially with two top-20 draft picks on Thursday night. Houston was bad on both ends of the floor last season with needs all over the place. The Rockets are in a position where they need to be going after the best player available.
Rockets 2023 NBA Draft selections
No. 4: Amen Thompson, G, Overtime Elite
No. 20: Cam Whitmore, G, Villanova
A native of San Leandro, CA, before attending high school in Fort Lauderdale, FL, Thompson opted to forego his senior year of high school to join OTE in 2021. Playing for the City Reapers this past season within the upstart league, he earned OTE MVP by averaging 16.3 points, 7.1 rebounds, 6.1 assists, and 2.4 steals per game. At 6’7” with a long wingspan, has incredible explosiveness off the dribble and is an excellent ball handler. He’s a great playmaker and NBA Draft scouts have drawn comparisons for him to John Wall. His jump shooting needs work as he shot just 25% from through this past season.
Whitmore fell in the draft in a big way. He was once considered a top-5 pick but went to Houston at 20. The forward needs to develop his perimeter game to be a true offensive threat, but he should be a solid defender right away.
Fantasy basketball outlook
It will take some time for Thompson to iron out a role within this Rockets team and he might not be a fantasy asset right out the gate. However, he is someone to consider drafting and stashing for later in the season. Whitmore is another prospect who could see some playing time off the bench, but he’s best left on the waiver wire in his rookie season until the Rockets establish some sort of rotation that works.