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Appreciating the chaos of Corey Brewer

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Before he was a black hole missing shots in the corner, he was the Rockets’ one-man destructive force off the bench

NBA: Houston Rockets at Portland Trail Blazers
Brewer stealing the ball, and my heart
Craig Mitchelldyer-USA TODAY Sports

Corey Brewer is gone and our commenters rejoice. That’s probably not fair. I rejoiced, too.

Why wouldn’t I? Why shouldn’t we? Corey Brewer made too few shots while making too much money and he inexplicably got tons and tons of playing time (and starts!) as his game rapidly declined. Lou Williams, at least offensively, is a wildly better, more efficient player, and he should flourish under Mike D’Antoni.

But...

Call me nostalgic: I’m going to miss Corey Brewer, and if you call yourself a Rockets fan and tell me you’re not … well, I would question that.

Every Rockets reporter since the trade has been sure to point two things: 1. The 2015 Western Conference Finals trip doesn’t happen without Brew. 2. Corey Brewer is a class act. These are both pretty undeniably true, but I don’t want to talk about that. No, I want to talk about this.

Are you seeing that shit right now? Go back and watch that shit again. It’s only a minute long.

*waits*

Holy shit, right?

That game was two years ago, before the WCF run. Brew was a midseason addition. The Blazers had pretty good squad who played a lot of minutes together. I was pissed because we were about to lose in Portland again and that is never going to feel good any time it happens.

Kevin McHale threw Brewer in with just over more minutes to go just to see what would happen. I’m sure Coach McHale just said, “Ay Corey, just go fuck shit up, OK?” and Brewer said “How so?” and McHale said, “Literally, go 1-on-5 idc idc.”

You: ”Colin, the Rockets lost that game…”

Me: “Ya, hey, shut up.”

The Rockets did lose that game. Brewer’s comeback wasn’t enough, but I don’t think I sound like an idiot when I say that that night against the Blazers wasn’t a fluke. Hell, that night against the Blazers is why I wasn’t as surprised as everyone else in Game 6 against the Clippers. Ethan Rothstein liked to point this out during that season: the only better fast-break finisher, statistically, that year? LeBron James.

Did all this make watching Corey Brewer take 10 steps back over the course of the next two seasons that much worse? Oh, most definitely. But I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

You: …but like, would you trade it for 2017 Lou Williams?

Me: Oh, most definitely.