Houston wants to trade Omer Asik in the next few days. That’s been out there. And according to the most recent reports, the Houston Rockets may in fact already have the framework of a deal in place.
As of Dec. 15, players who signed new contracts last summer are eligible to be traded, and players traded before Dec. 19 are eligible to be included in a second trade before the Feb. 20 trade deadline passes. Complicated? Yea, I know.
But that’s the reason why the Rockets want to trade Asik before the 19th – to give the team that they do trade him to flexibility.
This is the latest from Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle:
Morey would not discuss his plans, but a person with knowledge of the Rockets’ thinking said Morey set his Dec. 19 deadline in part because he knows he has an offer he is willing to take. Though things can change several times by Thursday, that individual said “it very likely will be a pretty complicated, three-way deal. There are a lot of moving parts.” …
According to individuals with knowledge of the talks, the Rockets do not have a deal in place but were greatly encouraged when trade talks intensified Dec. 6, so much so that the confidence that they would be ready to pull the trigger helped inspire the Dec. 19 “deadline” as much as needing a deal by then to be able to move players again this season.
As much as speculation has centered around Thad Young, if the Rockets are to do a deal with Philadelphia and former Rockets assistant GM Sam Hinkie, it is more likely to be a three-team deal in which the player the Sixers trade goes elsewhere.
The earlier rumored deal with the Sixers basically brought Thad Young to Houston, along with filling pieces. It probably makes the most sense, if in fact the Rockets wouldn’t put an offer together that would entice the Pelicans to let go of Ryan Anderson. However, both of those possibilities appear bleak at the time being, according to reports.
Also, Marc Stein of ESPN.com is reporting that the Boston Celtics could be a dark horse in the Asik sweepstakes:
The advice offered us Sunday was stern: Keep an eye on Boston. The Celtics possess two players in different salary ranges that would presumably fit in useful ways next to Dwight Howard: Jeff Green and Brandon Bass. The Celts also have a spare first-round draft pick or two to plug into any trade equation to sweeten the deal for Houston, amid rising suspicions around the league that Morey’s Rockets are going to find a way to come out of the Asik saga with at least one future first.
I’m not really digging any trades that are centered around first round draft picks, unless they are lottery picks – for the Rockets, at least. Houston is built, or building, to win now and future draft picks won’t do them any good. I still think Asik will land in Philly. To me, that looks like the best deal, rumored to be out there. But, again, a lot can change between now and Thursday – the Rockets self-imposed Asik trade deadline.