According to sources, the Houston Rockets have dealt forward Chase Budinger to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for their 18th overall pick in this Thursdays NBA Draft.
The Rockets will also include the rights to Lior Eliyahu.
Budinger averaged 9.6 points and 3.7 rebounds in 58 games last season for Houston.
With this trade, the Rockets now hold the 14th, 16th and 18th picks in the 2012 NBA Draft.
GRADE FOR MINNESOTA TIMBERWOLVES: C
Chase Budinger is a terrific role player who can stretch the defense with his three-point shooting (40% from behind the arc last season), but I just don’t see how he fits in with the Timberwolves considering the huge depth they have at his position (Williams, Love, Beasley, Johnson, Webster).
Did the team really need to make this deal?
Budinger will surely see some minutes here and there, but I just can’t help but feel that Minnesota would have been better off just sticking with their pick and selecting the best available player.
GRADE FOR HOUSTON ROCKETS: B
I’m going to stick with the “B” letter grade for now, but that’s just until I see if what the Rockets are planning actually pans out.
Rumour has it that Houston is acquiring assets in order to pull off a deal to land Dwight Howard of the Orlando Magic.
Even if the Rockets do land Howard, it may be hard to convince him to resign if his heart and mind are set elsewhere (Brooklyn?). If the Howard deal doesn’t fall through, the Rockets will still have plenty of young talent and draft picks that they could package together to land another star player (which they desperately need).
Christopher Walder is a sports blogger and lead editor for Sir Charles in Charge. You may follow him on Twitter @WalderSports