Houston Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey announced today that the team has signed unrestricted free agent Josh Smith. The versatile big man was the youngest player in NBA to record 500 career blocks, was twice named NBA Eastern Conference Player of the Week (12/9/07 and 12/10/12) and was named to the 2010 All-NBA Defensive Second Team.
Smith (6-9, 225, Oak Hill Academy) owns career averages of 15.4 points, 7.9 rebounds, 3.3 assists, 1.3 steals and 2.0 blocks in 781 games (758 starts) with the Atlanta Hawks and Detroit Pistons. The versatile big man averaged career highs of 18.8 points, 9.6 rebounds per game while starting all 66 games of the 2011-12 season. Smith has averaged double-digit scoring in every season since his rookie year in 2004-05. He has also started 52 career postseason contests, averaging 15.8 points, 8.5 rebounds and 1.7 blocks, as well as winning Eastern Conference Quarterfinal Series in 2009, 2010 and 2011
Selected by the Atlanta Hawks 17th overall in the 2004 NBA Draft, Smith rank’s highly among many of Atlanta’s all-time franchise leaders. He ranks ninth in games played (676), seventh in total rebounds (5407), ninth in free throws made (2044), fifth in steals (857) and second in blocks (1440).
The 11th year forward was waived by the Detroit Pistons on December 22, 2014 and was signed as a free agent by the Rockets after clearing waivers on December 24, 2014.
In order to maintain a roster of 15 players, the team has requested waivers on Tarik Black.
Black (6-8, 253, Kansas), has appeared in 25 contests with the Rockets this season (including 12 starts) averaging 4.2 points and 5.1 rebounds in 15.7 minutes per game. Undrafted in the 2014 NBA Draft, Tarik Black was originally signed by the Houston Rockets on August 27, 2014.