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Rockets 2021 player previews: Bruno Caboclo

The Brazilian Kevin Durant is back with a chance to crack the rotation.

Philadelphia 76ers v Houston Rockets Photo by Ashley Landis-Pool/Getty Images

Bruno Caboclo

While James Harden is taking up all the news for the Houston Rockets, there’s still a group of guys that have shown up for training camp that we need to be talking about, so our player previews continue with Caboclo.

He re-signed with the Rockets on a two-year, vet minimum deal just a week and a half ago, and with a roster currently in flux, he has a chance to earn some bench minutes at center behind Christian Wood and DeMarcus Cousins or at power forward behind P.J. Tucker.

The 6’9” 25-year-old has been long on potential since coming into the league six years ago now, but he’s never been able to take that next step despite averaging 8.3 points, 4.6 rebounds, and a block per night in 34 games for the Memphis Grizzlies back in 2019.

He wasn’t able to expand upon that, however, and found himself back in Houston in a deadline deal for Jordan Bell. He played in just 8 games for the Rockets last season, but with a window of opportunity to get on the court this year, it might be make-or-break time for Caboclo.

Can he earn some backup minutes playing solid D with his 7’9” wingspan and his improving three-point shot? Or will he continue to famously be “two years away from being two years away”, as he was referred to when drafted?

Now’s his chance. Who knows how long Cousins can stay healthy? Tucker also isn’t getting any younger. The rest of the options in the front court are all younger and less experienced than Caboclo. Success famously lies at the confluence of opportunity and preparation. Caboclo now has the opportunity. What happens with the rest is up to him.