As the Playoffs come close to the final 4 teams, I keep thinking about my Rockets and how to improve them if I was GM. I already create a post about what do do in the draft, the recap is below.
I would LOVE, LIKE & HATE for the Rockets to:
LOVE: Package picks with a player and move to Portland’s 6 and draft someone like Beal, Barnes or Perry Jones. (Someone that has a great chance of being a star)
LIKE: If Lamb, Rivers or Terrence Ross with 14, and Arnett Moultie or Fab Melo with 16 (Someone that is a little risky but a really high reward/ceiling)
HATE: Meyers Leonard, or any PG or average low ceiling PF (Someone who doesnt have the ability to become a star)
Now I started thinking about TRADES the Rockets can do but first we have to see what we can offer.
Probably our most coveted player is PG Kyle Lowry. He is all-star borderline at a very friendly contract. He can pass rebound and score very well, and can fit any system. Lowry is on the hook for $5.7M and $6.2M the year after.
After Lowry is kind of a free for all. Luis Scola is a veteran, true professional, and a work horse. He still put up numbers of 15.5 pts and 6.5 rebounds. His bread and butter moves come from the post and a solid mid-range jumper, stuff many players/teams lack nowadays. Scola makes $9.4M next year.
After Scola I would put Courtney Lee. Im not sure what kind of money he will be making next year but I will guess about the same as Kyle Lowry. Lee is a 2-way player that averaged 14 pts, 3.3 reb and 1.7 assist as a starter. He plays great defense but is a bit undersized for a SG. Still Lee can be the missing piece to a great team that has a star in another position.
Kevin Martin had a bad year. I would say 20% of it has to do with the trade that didnt happen, 30% because of the new rules that refs have seemed to forget about, and 50% because of his injury. Still Martin can flat out score! His trade value might be down but his contract can make the numbers work in getting an All-Star trade happen. Martin's contract expires this season coming where he will make $12.4M.
Samuel Dalembert has a team option of $6.7M that might be picked up so he can be traded. If a team lacks a good defensive center, Dally can be their man. He still provided the Rockets with 8pts, 8rebs, and 2 blocks as a starter.
Everyone else doesnt make enough and will can be thrown is to sweeten any deal like Patterson, Parsons, or Budinger.
So which All-Star is available?
Here are the most possible candidates coming this summer that might be worth getting.
Pau Gasol: I think Kobe blames him in public because he is soft and wont fight back. He also deserves Kobe calling him out. I also think he no longer fits in their system with Bynum developing the way he is. There just isnt enough touches for him. Pau is set to make ~$19M in 12-13 and 13-14, but still averages 17.4 pts, 10.4 rebs, and 2 blocks a game.
Dwight Howard: $19.5M and guaranteed All-Star. Would he be just a rental or could the Rockets surround him with enough talent in 1 year to make him stay? If he is only a rental would that be such a bad thing as well for the Rockets? They would be forced to rebuild. I heard on 790, the reason he signed the extension was because Orlando told him that if he didnt, they already had a trade with the Rockets worked out.
Josh Smith: Its another early exist for the Hawks and it seems like every summer its the same talk with Atlanta. So much money committed to so little players. Will the Hawks finally agree to trade him to get something back in value? He would be a rental making only $13.2M. He averaged 18.8 pts, 9.6 rebs, and 1.7 blocks. He is still in his prime right now for the next several years.