Daniel Theis, the experience asset of the young Rockets | NBA
Having become a pivotal player, with the Celtics and then with the Bulls, Daniel Theis has made fruitful his good performances of the last two seasons (9.4 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.1 against average since 2019/20), this summer, in s’ signing with the Rockets for $ 36 million over four years.
In Houston, the German will however discover a whole new role, since he will have for primary mission to play the mentors of young Texan talents, in the company of Eric Gordon, DJ Augustin, David Nwaba, Danuel House and perhaps John Wall. . And to be the perfect “big brother” of Jalen Green, Kevin Porter Jr, Kenyon Martin Jr, Josh Christopher, Usman Garuba and other Alperen Sengun, Daniel Theis will rely in particular on his years spent in Massachusetts.
» I had the chance to learn, from Al Horford and Aron Baynes in Boston, what it means to be a leader. », He delivers, to USA Today, on the occasion of the Media Day of his new franchise. » And now I hope I can do the same here with Jalen [Green], Josh [Christopher], but also Usman [Garuba] and [Alperen Sengun] who come from Europe, to help them adapt to the NBA, to develop and progress, year after year. «
Passing on knowledge to young Europeans in the workforce
Precisely, the contribution of Daniel Theis should be all the more important with Usman Garuba and Alperen Sengun. Two players who, like him, mainly evolve in the racket and who, above all, passed through Europe before flying to the United States and the NBA.
» It’s a different basketball here », Analyzes the 29-year-old interior. » You saw it this summer, when Team USA players talked about the FIBA game, how to score and how to play. It’s a lot more physical and it’s also faster. In Europe, you play according to systems, generally going to the end of the clock. Here, if you’re open, you take your shots. We have to go fast. And, this year our goal will be to play fast, we have athletic players. That will be their main adjustment: the speed of the game compared to Europe. «
Former headliner of the German championship, from 2010 to 2017, where he also had great success with Bamberg individually and collectively, Daniel Theis obviously has no shortage of advice for his young teammates, three weeks away. their official debut in the Great League.
» Behave like sponges « , Recommends them the pivot of the » Mannschaft « , which took a long time to adapt to the NBA game, between 2017 and 2019. » You have to store everything that is possible, in training or in a match. It is important to observe everything, to learn and to ask questions. As for me, as a veteran, I will have to communicate as much as possible. «
Future keystone of the Texas defense?
Communication, an aspect in which Daniel Theis will be eagerly awaited, given his experience in the league. Especially in defense, where the slightest mistake at this level can pay off in cash.
And the best defender of the 2016/17 Bundesliga season is aware that he will have to be irreproachable in this sector, so as not to further handicap the Rockets. A franchise that we do not already imagine particularly impermeable defensively and which plans, as a bonus, to play at a high tempo, in 2021/22.
» I can be an anchor in defense, a bit like in Boston or Chicago “, Concludes the German. » The hub always sees everything. I have to be vocal in the pick-and-roll coverage, I have to protect my teammates. Mistakes will happen, but I have to be there no matter what, to help them. It’s all about confidence and communication in defense, it must always be the case. And, if we can pull off defensive stops, then we can play fast. «
It remains to be seen whether Daniel Theis’ defensive predispositions will allow him to make it into Houston’s starting five, alongside Kevin Porter Jr, Jalen Green, Christian Wood and, potentially, Jae’Sean Tate.
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