April 6, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Houston Rockets point guard Goran Dragic (3) takes the ball down court during the first half of the game against the Los Angeles Lakers at the Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE
I'd like to take this opportunity to extend cheers to Goran Dragic.
When Kyle Lowry went down with the disease from Outbreak (or something like that), it's safe to say everyone thought the season was over. I certainly didn't see any sort of run in the Rockets. We all agreed, Goran was a nice player, but without another point guard next to him, nobody expected him to play up to Lowry's level. In fact, Dragic has gone and supplanted Lowry's play. And that's just goddamn amazing.
Check out Gogi's stats as a starter. They very, very nice:
PPG: 18.1 APG: 8.8 RPG: 3.5 FG%: 52.4 3P%: 44 FT% 82.1
Dragic has eclipsed the twenty-point mark in each of his last four games. Since he took over for Lowry on March 10, the Rockets have beaten Oklahoma City on the road, the Bulls on the road, the Lakers at home and on the road and a tough Memphis team at home. Those were wins that Houston failed to get earlier in the year, and while I think Marcus Camby's influence has been a huge factor, it's clear that these wins have Dragic's footprints — scattered and circular as they may be — all over them.
Does this mean the Rockets should alter plans and up the ante to re-sign Goran at any cost? I'm not sure. It all depends on the draft and on who else is available in free agency, but I still think Lowry is this team's point guard. That said, if Houston can make room for Dragic and convince him to stay for a reasonable cost, that'd be just grand.
So, once again, thanks, Goran. You might be gone next year and your agent must be loving your recent string of performances, but for the time being, I think we can all appreciate the effort, intensity and overall badassery you've brought to the table. You've kept this season fun and entertaining, and for that, I will be rooting for Slovenia in just about any sport in the near future.