Nate Hinton, who was invited to camp, has been formally released by the Rockets, according the transaction log on NBA.com.
Hinton, a 6’5″ wing who played college basketball for Houston, committed to the Rockets in August by signing an Exhibit 10 contract. Since 2020, he has played in 23 NBA games with the Mavericks and Pacers while spending the most of his three professional seasons on two-way contracts or G League agreements.
The 24-year-old participated for the Cleveland Charge, the Cavaliers’ NBAGL affiliate, in 27 regular season games (33.9 MPG), averaging 12.0 PPG and 6.3 RPG on.466/.383/.789 shooting. He played a minimal number of minutes in three preseason games for the Rockets.
Hinton’s returning rights were bought by the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, Houston’s G League affiliate, from the San Diego Charge earlier this week, indicating that the Vipers would get him after he clears waivers. He is entitled to a $75K incentive under his contract if he stays with the NBAGL team for at least 60 days.
Twenty players are still under contract with the Rockets, so a few more adjustments will be required to make the roster ready for the regular season. It’s interesting that Jeenathan Williams, another camp invitee, had no transactions shown on NBA.com today. That may be a clue that Houston wants to make him a two-way player, which would require the club to release one of its existing two-way players.
The Rockets now have 16 players on completely or partly guaranteed contracts, in addition to Williams and their three two-way players. There’s no need to complete that transaction until Sunday or Monday since they’ll need to trade or release a player who is due guaranteed money in order to create their normal 15-man roster.