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Rockets 2021 player previews: David Nwaba

The Third Member of Team Achilles (the great battlefield runner, until he wasn’t)

Houston Rockets v Cleveland Cavaliers
Give a little muscle and spend a little cash. At least Nwaba is safe from this in games.
Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

That’s right folks, I am now authorized to offer you, good fans of the Houston Rockets not one, not two, but three, three, torn Achilles tendon comebacks!

What’s that you say? So what? Well, what if I told you that they were all on one team? One team! How much would you pay now? Twenty? Twenty-five? Thirty? Thirty-five? Forty? What if I told you that the total number for players with Achilles tendon injuries was Forty-Five million?

Well, yeah, that’s pretty much all John Wall, but still. Three players on the Rockets have suffered significant Achilles injuries. All of them are new to the team. There is, of course, John Wall. There’s Demarcus Cousins, who has recovered from that injury, and is recovering from a different injury. Then there is the lesser-known David Nwaba.

If you recall him at all, it will probably be because he is the sort of tough, solid, physical defender actually capable of slowing James Harden. There aren’t many people who can do that. David Nwaba, 27, and surprisingly, a Cal Poly college player, stands 6’5” 220 and was known for his athleticism. We will see how much of that returns, as Nwaba makes his comeback from injury.

In the NBA Nwaba entered the league undrafted in 2016-17 and has since played for the Lakers, Bulls, Cavaliers and the Dreamshake’s unasked-for, erstwhile sister team, the Northeastern Nets. In his last season, pre-injury, Nwaba shot a scorching 43% from 3, though in limited attempts.

Throughout his career his per36 numbers have been decent, at 12.2pts, 6.5 rbs and 1.3stl. His 3pt game, and defense experienced fairly steady growth in his short career. He looks to be a key bench player, as the Rockets have the potential to send out a seemingly endless stream of solidly built bench guys going around 6’5”, 220 with Nwaba, Sterling Brown, Mason Jones, Jae’Sean Tate and the slightly thinner, Jerian Grant. Kenyon Martin Jr. is close, at 6’6”, 215, but he’s bound to fill out as he gets older.

The Team of Middle Linebackers dream is still alive in Houston.

(John Wall himself is part of this Brick Wall Club, at 6’4”, 215, don’t forget The Hobbit and of course James Harden.)

Nwaba at this point has more previews/season-recaps written here than games played as a Rocket. I’m sure we’re all looking forward to that changing.


All Middle Linebackers?

This poll is closed

  • 74%
    Yes. Hit ‘em as hard as the law allows.
    (60 votes)
  • 7%
    No. I want a floppy-haired emo team.
    (6 votes)
  • 18%
    The Dallas Cowboys are interested.
    (15 votes)
81 votes total Vote Now