GM

Garrison Mathews has made his presence known with the Houston Rockets, and they've rewarded him for his recent surge. 

Per ESPN, the Rockets converted Mathews' two-way deal into a four-year contract worth $8 million Friday, cementing him with his first major contract since joining the NBA in 2019 as an undrafted free agent.

Houston is 7-4 since the Franklin and Lipscomb alum entered the starting lineup and is averaging 14.5 points in that span. His true shooting average is 63.5% as of late. 

“It’s been a long road," Mathews said after receiving his new deal. "It’s been tough. A lot of people don’t know the situations I’ve had to go through to get here." 

He said he considered leaving pro basketball before his agent talked him into getting his two-way deal with the Rockets, a deal that would help pave a path for him to be a contributor with Houston for years to come. 

"I was planning on doing something else with my life," he shared, shedding light on the difficulty of having a pro career with a two-way deal.

"It’s a lot of emotions just because it’s taken me so long to get here and honestly I had lost faith it would ever come, to be honest with you. A lot of emotions. I’m just super thankful." 

Affectionally known as "Garry Byrd" by Rockets fans, Mathews has been on a tear as of late since entering the Houston starting five in November.

After some time with the Washington Wizards and a brief stint with the Boston Celtics, Mathews now is entrenched in the future of the Rockets, who are 10-20 and 13th in the Western Conference. 

As the Rockets continue to rebuild and tinker with their roster, the team seems more than happy to keep Mathews as a part of it.