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Rockets 2022-2023 player previews: David Nwaba

The veteran will likely be struggling to find minutes this year.

NBA: Houston Rockets at Utah Jazz Rob Gray-USA TODAY Sports

Wait, David Nwaba is still on the roster? Sure is. He’s easy to forget about considering Houston’s now plethora of forwards all vying for playing time, but Nwaba is about to beging his third season in a Houston Rockets uniform.

There’s not going to be a ton of playing time available for him. Eric Gordon is likely starting at the three, and Jae’Sean Tate, Tari Eason, Garrison Matthews, and KJ Martin are all vying for time at the spot, leaving precious few minutes for the the 29-year-old swingman Nwaba.

But he’s been effective in small spurts for Houston over the last two years even if he doesn’t have a sparkling box line to back that up. His numbers in two years H-town read 6.7 points, 3.5 rebounds, 0.9 assists, and 0.8 steals per game with 48.5 percent shooting from the field and and 28.6 percent from deep over 16.9 minutes per night.

But Nwaba has been instant energy, providing athelticism to run the floor offensively and also the ability guard multiple positions on defense and cause some havoc. He’s similar to Eason in that respect, though certainly not with the same high ceiling as his rookie counterpart.

Nwaba is signed through the end of this season, while the Rockets hold a team option for next year, so in all likelihood, this is his last year with Houston. He’s mostly going to serve as depth injury insurance and has been running with the third group thus far in training camp.

He may even serve as some trade filler should the Rockets elect to make any moves this year. But should Houston need the veteran to step up for minutes this season, expect the same spirited punch on both ends of the floor that we’ve seen from Nwaba so far. Just don’t expect him to sustain it for the long haul should he need to serve a major part.