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Chris Paul wants Clint Capela to lead Rockets on defense

Clint Capela

Coming into the 12th season of his career and his third NBA team, Chris Paul is once again taking the role of a vocal leader in the locker room, but not before teaching his lessons to others within the lineup.

Paul is especially honing into young Clint Capela, who has held his own with a breakout season in 2016-17, averaging 12.6 points, 8.1 rebounds, and 1.2 blocks — all while besting a horrid free-throw shooting percentage from 37 to 53 percent last season.

“A lot of people forget how far (DeAndre Jordan) came — he became the leader of the defense,” Paul told The Associated Press. “Everybody is their own man, but Clint is more than capable and he knows how to play. We’re going to need him to be the leader of our defense.”

In a team full of offensive firepower, the Rockets now boast a 1-3-5 combo of skilled defenders in Paul, Trevor Ariza, and Capela; who is bound to emerge as the target of even more lobs with Chris Paul at the wheel.

Clint Capela connected on 64.3 percent of his field goal attempts in only a whisker below 24 minutes per game, making him a valuably-efficient asset within the Rockets’ spread offense. His 2.7 offensive rebounds per game proved vital as the Rockets led the league in 3-pointers attempted by a vast margin.