After the first couple days of training camp, there have been a small handful of players that have stuck out to me, but none more than the Rockets’ new big man Omer Asik.
In the limited time that we’ve been able to watch practice, Asik has looked terrific. He’s absolutely huge… you notice right away that he’s exactly what this team has been missing — a large, imposing force on defense. He appears very sound defensively, knowing where to be on the floor, and covers quickly against penetration to block shots.
Offensively, he’s supposed to be extremely raw and doesn’t have the best pair of hands. I haven’t seen that. He’s creating space for himself on offense, running the pick and roll, and he’s finishing around the basket. I’ve probably witnessed him throw down 6 or 7 slams in the brief stints I’ve seen over two days. Now, I certainly haven’t seen any ‘create your own shot’ kind of offense, and I don’t expect to, but it’s clear he’s a load around the basket on both ends.
I was impressed enough with his play that I felt I should focus on asking his teammates and coaches what their impressions have been. From Kevin McHale to Jeremy Lin to Chandler Parsons, the Rockets have been giving high praise to the guy they simply call “O.” Here’s what they — and Asik himself — had to say on the second day of camp.