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Source: Rockets inquire about trading up for #1 pick


NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Oregon State at Oklahoma State Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

What if I told you the Rockets front office weren’t members of Green Gang or Mobley Mob, but rather the Cade Crusade?

According to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony, several teams, including the Rockets, are probing the Pistons on their price to trade up to the number one pick, likely to select Oklahoma State point guard Cade Cunningham.

Givony lists the Rockets, Cavaliers, Pelicans and Thunder as teams inquiring about acquiring the top pick. The Pelicans, Thunder and Rockets all have an excess of future first round picks after trading disgruntled All-Stars, while Cleveland is close enough to jump to one without having to give up too much.

However, the Rockets are even closer and would only need to swap one and two, which would still give the Pistons an opportunity to draft everyone except the top pick on the board.

The top pick has only been traded seven times before the start of the regular season. The last time this happened was back in 2017, when the Sixers and Celtics struck a deal to send the top pick to Philadelphia. The 76ers ended up selecting Markelle Fultz, while Boston picked Jayson Tatum. Boston also was able to net another first-round pick in the deal, which they used to draft Romeo Langford in 2019.

As for what it would take to move from two to one, the Rockets would likely need to part ways with a future first rounder. It’s possible that Detroit would ask for all three of Houston’s firsts this year for #1, but Houston would have to ask itself how bad they want Cade Cunningham. Future picks are necessary, especially for a rebuilding team, but if you have the opportunity to trade for a guy you think can win you a championship, then the trade is worth it.

What do you think Red Nation? Chime off in the comments below.