According to Ken Burger of CBS Sports, on January 16th Josh Smith’s agent and the Atlanta Hawks general manager Danny Ferry had a meeting together. During that meeting Smith’s agent listed the Houston Rockets as one team that he was interested in.
“Among the teams that would appeal to Smith are Dallas, Houston and Memphis.”
Sam Amico of Fox Sports also commented on the possibility of the Rockets making a trade before the deadline.
“It all starts with Smith. He reportedly has drawn serious interest from Phoenix. But Dallas is another potential destination, as are Charlotte, Houston, New Orleans and Sacramento. Houston is one team reported to have a keen eye on Indiana forward Danny Granger. The Pacers aren’t totally against keeping the 29-year-old forward, who has missed all of the season with a knee injury. But following the emergence of All-Star Paul George, they are taking and making exploratory calls.”
This might have been true until Dwight Howard reportedly came out and said he was “intrigued” by the Houston Rockets. Houston loves Smith, but not as much as they love Howard.
Josh Smith is a star with superstar potential. He has clearly been over playing with the Hawks and wants to move on immediately. If he was to join a team like the Rockets it would light a spark under him and push him to new limits.
If the Howard deal falls through or if the Rockets don’t think it will happen they should pull a deal off for Smith. But if they think they have a legitimate shot at Howard they should wait. Both players are free agents at the end of the season.
The Rockets desperately need to go in a different direction at power forward. Patrick Patterson and Marcus Morris both look more suited to be backups. Smith would change that dynamic but also fit in with the Rockets style of play. He likes to run the floor as do the Rockets. Could you imagine Jeremy Lin or James Harden handling the ball why Smith cuts to the basket? That’s a highlight reel waiting to happen.
Houston has been linked to a few names so far this season, but it all starts with Dwight Howard. I don’t see them making a big move until that domino falls.