- Created on Wednesday, 27 June 2012 23:16
- Last Updated on Thursday, 16 May 2013 07:51
- Written by Travis Pulver
Ever since they lost center Yao Ming the Houston Rockets have been a “good, but not good enough” type of team. At times the team has played unbelievably well, but for the second season in a row they folded down the stretch and missed the playoffs.
General Manager Daryl Morey is doing what he can to make sure that fans are not disappointed again next season. So far it is hard to tell exactly how things are going to pan out for Houston, but there is one thing that is certain—it’s about to get interesting.
Morey has been pretty busy beating the trade bushes to see what sort of assets he can build for the team. It is widely believed that the end-goal is to gather enough to make an offer to the Orlando Magic for center Dwight Howard.
It is not known exactly what the Magic would require to attain the services of Howard, but the Rockets do have a number of assets ready to move. Oft-injured guard Kevin Martin has said that he will not resign with the Rockets when his contract is up. The relationship between head coach Kevin McHale and Kyle Lowry is not very healthy putting his name on the chopping block as well.
The team also has a trio of first round picks that they are trying to package along with players in order to move up. Houston started with the No 14 and 16 pick, but traded Chase Budinger to Minnesota picking up the No 18 pick in the process. The No 14 pick and Samuel Dalembert were traded to the Bucks, giving Houston access to the No 12 pick now as well.
With the draft just hours away Morey has remained active trying to move up even further. An offer was made to Sacramento with hopes of getting the No 5 pick (Lowry and No 16 for No 5 and Chuck Hayes) was shot down. There have been reports that the team is actively pursuing a deal with Toronto to pick up the No 8 pick.
The general belief is that all this work is so the team can make an attractive enough offer to the Magic for Dwight Howard. Should they do so they could end up mortgaging the future for the present. Several reports say that Howard has no interest in staying in Houston and will not resign with them when his contract is up after next season.
Getting “stuck” with three mid-round picks is not such a bad thing for this draft. There are a lot of good players in the draft, and there stand to be some available when it’s Houston’s turn that could definitely make an impact on the team next season.
Among the names expected to go from No 12 to 18 Thursday night are Tyler Zeller (North Carolina), Terrence Ross (Washington), Jeremy Lamb (UConn), Myers Leonard (Illinois), Perry Jones III (Baylor), Moe Harkless (St. John’s), Terrence Jones (Kentucky), Kendall Marshall (North Carolina), Austin Rivers (Duke), and Royce White (Iowa State).
At this point there is no telling who will be on the team after tomorrow’s draft or in the near future. The only thing we can count on is the next few are going to be pretty interesting.