The Houston Rockets made a big splash prior to the deadline, involved in a four-team trade with the Hawks, Nuggets and Timberwolves. Houston came away from the reported deal with Robert Covington, a 3-and-D wing who should jump immediately into the starting lineup. Mike D’Antoni has opted for extreme small ball the rest of the season by giving up Clint Capela. With no true center, how will the trade affect the Rockets in fantasy basketball? We take a look.
Fantasy basketball analysis: Robert Covington to the Rockets
Of all the pieces involved in this trade, this one to me makes the most sense. The Rockets needed a 3-and-D swingman who can play both the 3 and 4, adding depth in the front court in someone who can stick with the team long-term. Covington has two years remaining on his contract past this season at a reasonable $12M per. Okay, let’s get to the fantasy analysis.
Covington’s addition basically means Mike D’Antoni is ditching the center position altogether. The Rockets will run small lineups, most likely featuring P.J. Tucker at the 5 and Covington at the 4. Covington was only averaging 29.4 minutes per game with Minnesota and shooting 34.6% from 3-point range on 6.5 attempts per game. I think both those numbers jump a bit, maybe not his shooting percentage, but Covington should be encouraged to take more 3s.
RoCo also gets better looks playing with James Harden and Russell Westbrook as opposed to basically no guards with the Timberwolves. Covington should also see well over 30 minutes per game, we could even see him play 36-38 minutes most nights. Right now on ESPN standard, Covington is at 78.9% ownership, so chances are he won’t be available in deeper leagues. I wouldn’t necessarily say scoop him up in a shallow league until we see how he fits with the team.