Is Clint Capela worth a max or near-max contract?
Clint Capela has been a huge part of the Houston Rockets postseason run. (May 5, 2018 – Source: Gene Sweeney Jr./Getty Images North America)

The Phoenix Suns are reportedly planning to offer Clint Capela a max or near-max deal in free agency. Although he has played well this season and has been a crucial key to the Houston Rocket’s success, is he worth that much money?

According to a recent report, the Phoenix Suns are supposedly willing to offer Clint Capela a lucrative deal this offseason. This is interesting because while the season is not over for the Hoston Rockets, this is the start of many expected big deals Capela is likely to receive.

The Suns were one of the worst teams in the NBA last year. They finished with a record of 21-61 which had them finish last in the whole league. They started the season with loads of drama from Eric Bledsoe which led to his being traded away from the team. They only have one player who is capable of becoming an All-Star in Devin Booker. It is safe to say that they need some help.

This leads to the discussion of whether or not Capela is worth that kind of big money. With Capela’s experience, he would be able to receive up to roughly 25 percent of the salary cap if he gets his max. Not bad for someone who is playing in just his fourth season in the NBA.

Let’s take a closer look at Clint Capela and his growth over these last four years to see if it would be a good idea to offer him this large of a contract.

Offensive Presence

It is no secret that Capela is an offensive powerhouse. He isn’t a powerhouse like James Harden or Kevin Durant, but he is still able to make his presence known on offense. Throughout his career, Capela has been able to average 10.6 points per game on 62.9 percent shooting from the field.

This year we have seen those numbers rise to 13.9 points on 65.2 percent shooting. We often see him run a pick and roll with Harden or Chris Paul and this leads to easy buckets. Who else is good at running the pick and roll? That’s right, Devin Booker from the Suns.

Standing at almost seven feet tall, teams won’t need him out on the wings ready to shoot a jump shot like other modern stretch bigs. It is worth noting though that this season his field goal percentage from 10-16 feet is an impressive 50 percent. He does dominate from 0-3 feet, shooting 71.7 percent this season.

Capela is also able to get his team second-chance opportunities by grabbing 3.3 offensive rebounds per game.

So, to wrap all of this up, Capela’s offensive presence alone is worth a max deal. Of course, this is all subjective, but when you add on everything else he excels at to his impressive offense, he is the real deal.

Defensive Presence

Now it is time to get to where Clint Capela truly excels, and that is on the defensive end of the court. Capela averaged 1.9 blocks per game this season, which was the second most in the league behind superstar Anthony Davis.

This is crucial for the Rockets because they are known to be a dominant offensive team. When you add Capela’s rim protecting abilities and his aptness to influence players’ shots when they drive the lane, he sets his team up to be better overall.

As far as his defensive rebounding goes, Capela is lethal. Averaging 7.6 per game, he is able to take advantage of his opponents misses and get the break started for his teammates. Put it all together, and Capela has all the makings of a stud on the defensive end.

Playoff Performance

We see it all the time. Players dominate in the regular season, but when it comes to the playoffs they are nowhere to be found. This is far from the case with Capela who has helped lead his team in Houston to the Western Conference Finals.

In fact, Capela has played even better than he did in the regular season in this year’s playoffs. His points per game increased from 13.9 to 14.2. He is grabbing 11.6 rebounds compared to his regular season average of 10.8. And he is leading the league in playoff blocks per game with 2.7 per contest.

These are all things you need out of your star player and Capela has proven he can deliver. He is doing it all on the biggest stage, and it is helping him make a name for himself.

Final Thoughts on Clint Capela

After going through all of Clint Capela’s stats and finding out if he is really worth that kind of contract, there is no question that he is.

A team like the Suns could use him to help jumpstart their rebuilding process, and he matches their team well. They need a big man who can dominate down low on both ends of the floor. They need someone who can help take the attention off of Booker. Clint Capela could do both of those things, and do them very well.

It is going to be hard to do because he will be a restricted free agent. But if the Rockets are willing to let him go to pursue bigger fish, then the Suns and other teams needing a stellar big should certainly offer him.

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