Hakeem Olajuwon praises Rockets’ rookie Capela

olajuwon-gymHakeem Olajuwon, long retired from playing in the NBA, sticks close to the Houston Rockets organization, for which he and the team won two back to back NBA titles in 1994 and 1995.

While Hall of Famer Olajuwon gets most of his attention these days for working with Dwight Howard, he did take notice of the younger member of the Rockets, namely, Clint Capela.

Capela made a good first impression in the playoffs, when Dwight Howard got into foul trouble.

Capela was first off the bench in Game 1 and made most of his 16 minutes on the floor, scoring 8 points, grabbing 6 rebounds and blocking 2 shots. Olajuwon was impressed, according to NBA.com.

“He has tremendous potential,” Olajuwon said. “I’m just trying to encourage him to play to his strengths because he does so many things so well. To work with a guy like that is wonderful because his potential is great. His first experience in the playoffs, he played confident and played his game.”

The legendary Rockets center advised Capela “to be himself and be comfortable”, playing with lots of veterans, and just play his game.

Olajuwon established himself as an unusually skilled offensive player for a big man, perfecting a set of fakes and spin moves that became known as his trademark Dream Shake.

He led the Houston Rockets to back-to-back NBA championships in 1994 and 1995. In 2008, he was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Olajuwon is a 12-time NBA All-Star, and has been named the 1994 NBA MVP.

Olajuwon is considered one of the greatest centers ever to play the game, a lot believe he was the best. He played in 1238 NBA games (1186 started), averaging 21.8 ppg, 11.1 rpg, 2.5 apg and 3.1 bpg in 35.7 minutes of action.


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