Coming up short in their attempt to sign Corey Brewer this summer, the Rockets have agreed to sign Ronnie Brewer to a partially guaranteed deal, according to Marc Stein.
Brewer, as you may remember from his days with the Utah Jazz, is a solid defender and was (once upon a time) efficient from the field in the limited opportunities he had to score. He hit 51.4% from the floor for his career in his first five seasons but has connected on just 40.4% in the past two years. He has absolutely zero deep ball range, but that’s not why the Rockets would be interested.
Brewer’s bread and butter has always been defense, and Daryl Morey and company (whoever is left in the front office) are likely hoping to get a big situational defender at the two-three at best here.
But are we sensing a pattern yet with these signings? Add the 6-foot-6 guard/forward to a Rockets list that includes Omri Casspi and Reggie Williams as once promising players that have absolutely dropped off a cliff the past two seasons. We’re not talking about a potential jackpot, but these also aren’t over-the-hill guys: Casspi is 25, Williams is 26 and Brewer is only 28. Cheap players with proven upside that nobody wants — that’s what they got in adding Carlos Delfino last year and it seems to be what they’re targeting in role players this year as well as the Rockets are rolling the dice that one (or more) can return to form.
Training camp, which opens late next month and is expected to be held here in Houston, is going to be competitive. The Rockets seem to have 13 guaranteed locks in Dwight Howard, James Harden, Chandler Parsons, Jeremy Lin, Omer Asik, Patrick Beverley, Terrence Jones, Donatas Motiejunas, Aaron Brooks, Marcus Camby, Francisco Garcia, Greg Smith and Isaiah Canaan. Casspi is expected to play a role this year and I believe the team likes Williams. The Rockets want to have Robert Covington in the plans. Jordan Henriquez and BJ Young are expected to be long shots, but now you’ve got Brewer.
I have no doubt that Morey is busy working the phones (and my guess is he’s trying to find a home for Greg Smith since this is the last year of his bargain deal). The Rockets are going to have to make some harder cuts than usual if they don’t work a deal.