Rockets rookie Usman Garuba dazzled on assignment in G League


Houston Rockets rookie Usman Garuba on Monday produced his first double-double with the Rio Grande Valley Vipers on assignment in the NBA G League during a win over Capitanes de la Ciudad de México.

Garuba finished with 18 points, 17 rebounds, five steals, three assists and two blocked shots in 31 minutes of work. He shot 8-of-10 from the field, including 2-of-2 from 3-point range, during the 125-123 win as the Vipers improved to 5-0.

The 23rd overall pick entered the NBA draft as a versatile player, capable of impacting games on both ends of the floor. He showed that ability on Monday between making plays on defense and scoring from multiple levels on offense.

The Rockets assigned Garuba to the Vipers last week in an effort to get him consistent playing time after playing sparingly this season. He debuted with the Vipers on Saturday, recording 14 points, eight rebounds and one steal in 33 minutes.

He had a strong campaign last season with Real Madrid, earning EuroLeague Rising Star honors, and will now look to continue his development with Rio Grande Valley. The Vipers return to action on Wednesday against the Austin Spurs.

The contest can be streamed on ESPN+ starting at 8:30 p.m. EST.


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