Nene was an insurance policy for the Rockets — one they tried to get on an incentive-heavy contract to make him a valuable trade chip, but the league shot that cap circumvention down. Houston will start Clint Capela at the five and have the veteran Tyson Chandler behind him (plus they can play some small ball without either). Nene was there to split some minutes with Chandler and be a trade asset.
Now he’s not even going to be that, at least through training camp. The Rockets announced that “center Nenê re-injured an adductor that is chronic and will not be with the team in training camp.”
For financial reasons, we may not see much of Nene this season anyway.
Nene played a limited role for the Rockets last season, getting in 42 games (health was part of the problem) and averaging 3.6 points an 2.9 rebounds a game when he did get in. His efficiency slipped last season but the Rockets were hoping he could still give them some solid minutes. Now… we will see.