The Rockets have been in a bit of a slump lately, but Jae’Sean Tate is doing his best to help the team. In the past three games, he has recorded at least 15 points and 10 rebounds per game.
Jae’Sean Tate, a forward with the Houston Rockets, is one of those guys in the NBA that is tough to categorize. These players were dubbed “tweeners” ten years ago, and they were mocked in a league that prized positional stability. The reverse is now true: the more positions a person can play, the more lineups he or she can fit into, and the more value they provide to a club. Tate is the kind of player that every NBA club desires.
During Rockets training camp, Silas stated of Tate, “We’ve been moving him around quite a bit.” “Nearly every position and all various playing groupings,” says the player.
Last season, the Rockets tried something similar with Tate.
Jae’Sean Tate spent the following time with the Rockets in 2020-21:
Shooting Guard has a 12 percent chance of being selected.
65 percent of small forwards
22 percent of the vote is in favor of moving on.
“I don’t want to put him in a box because he’s so adaptable,” Silas added. “I’ve been throwing him about and seeing where he fits in the best.”
This includes determining if Tate is a better starter or a bench player. The Rockets haven’t done much experimenting in preseason, as promised, but one area where they have is at starting small forward. Tate will start at small forward against Toronto on Monday night, giving Houston three different starting small forwards in as many games. Tate was a strong contender for the fifth starting spot before into the season, but Silas seems to want to take another look before making a decision.
“It’s not about who gets the ball first,” Tate added. “It’s all about winning, and that’s exactly what we’re aiming for.”
The Rockets like Eric Gordon’s spacing and power as a one-on-one defender, so they want to give him a chance before making a final decision. Given his strength as a help defender, Tate seems to make the most sense for Houston’s starting lineup, which has been so awful defensively. Unless Kevin Porter Jr. and Tate have improved their shooting significantly over the summer, it seems like floor space will be an issue for them coming season.
When questioned about his preferred position on the Rockets, Tate said, “Being that Swiss Army knife.” “Being ability to connect into many locations.” It makes you simpler to place in positions and allows you to play more positions, resulting in greater playing time.”
Last season, Tate drew a lot of parallels to P.J. Tucker, which is appropriate since Tucker was expected to do the same thing for Houston. Tucker was willing to play any position, whether small forward, power forward, or center, and as a result, he logged a lot of minutes in Houston. Tate was the most valuable player on last year’s Rockets squad, so it’s no surprise that he got the most minutes. When Tate was on the squad, Houston was 8.4 points per 100 possessions better, owing mainly to his defensive effect, a statistic that emphasizes his significance to this club.
“I’m still trying to establish myself and improve on what I accomplished last year,” Tate said. “I want to do my best to provide everything this squad need. It’s that energy and effort right now. Whether I’m playing the one, the two, or whatever they need, I’ll be there. That’s all I’m concerned with.”