The rookie arrives on the heels of James Harden forcing his way out of Houston.
With the Rockets, Harden ascended to an All-NBA status not seen with the Rockets since Hakeem Olajuwon patrolled the paint in Houston.
Harden led the league in scoring three times and in assists once with the Rockets, earning nine trips to the All-Star game, seven berths to the All-NBA squads, and one MVP trophy along the way.
In the wake of Harden’s departure, fair or not, Green becomes the centerpiece around the Rockets rebuild.
Jalen Green capping off a 25-point performance 💦 pic.twitter.com/WPYfKpyN5M
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) August 11, 2021
Green A Talented Prep Performer Who Can Score
Green comes to the Rockets after piloting the NBA G-League’s developmental program.
The initiative created a pathway for top prep prospects to forego college and play professional basketball without having to leave the United States.
Green became the first prep star to sign on with the G-League Ignite squad.
He ranked as the No. 1 prospect in the ESPN Top 100 for 2020, but instead of attending college for one year like fellow top prospects Cade Cunningham and Evan Mobley, Green went with the G-League and its paycheck.
He landed this opportunity after demonstrating his elite scoring skills at the prep level.
He averaged over 30 points per game in both his junior and senior seasons.
As a senior, Green averaged 31.5 points, 7.5 rebounds, and five assists per game, and was named Sports Illustrated All-American player of the year.
Then, with the G-League Ignite, Green scored 17.9 points over 15 contests, including scoring a season-high 30 points in the first round of the playoffs.
He averaged 4.1 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game as well.
Green’s ability to create his own shot piqued the interests of NBA scouts and kept him atop draft boards.
He sports a well-developed step-back jumper and navigates pick-and-rolls with veteran ease.
He’s a three-level scorer, just like Harden.
Green Already Has A Chip On His Shoulder
Jalen Green speaks out after being drafted by the Rockets 👀 pic.twitter.com/A5gD3MT7PQ
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) August 16, 2021
The best stars in the NBA believe in themselves fully.
And Green’s self-confidence comes through clearly in interviews with the 19-year-old.
Green believed he should have been the No. 1 pick in the draft, and took the slight drop to No. 2 as a, well, a slight.
Green projects as perhaps the most potent point scorer in the 2021 NBA Draft.
At 6-foot-5, Green sports elite athleticism and an ability to create his own offense.
Green can attack the basket at will, from both above, with his leaping ability, and below, with his excellent ball-handling.
He also has a polished perimeter game as well, netting both midrange jump shots and three-point attempts with ease.
Green should also already have a leg up on his 2021 draft classmates considering his pro-level experience playing with the G-League Ignite.
The transition from college to the pros can be a difficult one, so to have already made some progress in that transition last year should benefit Green and the Rockets.
The Rockets will pair Green with Kevin Porter Jr., the talented 2019 first-round pick who found new life in Houston.
Last season, Porter became the youngest player in NBA history with at least 50 points and 10 assists in a game.