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Josh Smith lands with Rockets -- did the West just get tougher AGAIN?

Smith wanted a guarantee of a starting position which Houston gave him. He shores up the weakest spot for the Rockets and makes them deeper and better.

Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Josh Smith, waived earlier this week by the Detroit Pistons, will join the Houston Rockets where he will immediately shore up the weakest position on a strong team by becoming the starting power forward. It's the second time in about a week that an Eastern Conference All Star has joined a Western Conference contender at their weakest spot, coming shortly after Rajon Rondo was traded to the Dallas Mavericks.

The Los Angeles Clippers were linked to Smith, at least superficially, as a team in need of help at the forward position. But Smith has always been most effective as a power forward, and the Clippers need is at small forward. Most importantly, Smith reported made it known that he would only sign with a guarantee of a starting position, something Doc Rivers probably would not provide but the Rockets did.

Regardless of your feelings about Smith, he clearly gives the Rockets another option at the four, and probably a better option than Donatas Motiejunas. So the West just got better -- again.