While the majority of the Rockets thrived in their convincing first-round victory over the Utah Jazz, Danuel House very much looked the part of playoff rookie.
After closing the season averaging 10 points per game on 48.5 percent from the field and 45 percent from beyond in his final 14 games, House’s production fell off a cliff against the Jazz. Despite Utah’s Beard-centric scheme essentially creating practice shots for the supporting cast, House shot the worst we’ve seen from him in Rockets’ red, averaging a meager 6 points on dreadful splits of 32 percent from the field and 27 percent from three.
However, while many see House’s struggles as reason to lessen his role going forward, they shouldn’t. He’s just missing shots. That’s it.
In the Jazz series, three’s classified by NBA.com as “open” or “wide open” constituted 80 percent (!) of House’s offense, up from 67 percent in the regular season. But his accuracy on those attempts fell from the mid-40s in the regular season down into the high-20s against the Jazz.
Intuitively, that shot distribution makes sense from the Jazz’s perspective. With the intensive scheme they were running, something had to be conceded. And anyone would rather lose a playoff series on threes from an unproven playoff performer compared to endless Harden-Capela lobs or Eric Gordon spot ups. Golden State will likely treat House similarly— although certainly not to the same extent.
So if House is going to continue getting the same high quality looks, he needs to stay in the rotation. Trust the 39 game sample over the recent 4 game sample: House is going to knock them down.
Honestly, at the rate House was shooting it at to close the season, he was in for a slump at some point. It’s out of the way now.
Considering the Rockets pushed the Warriors to the brink last season despite Trevor Ariza shooting an abysmal 33 percent from the field and 20 percent from three for the series, if House shoots it anywhere near his normal clip going forward, the Warriors are in for it.