The Houston Rockets were finally able to get rid of the huge contract of Ryan Anderson. They were also able to do it without trading their 2019 first round pick.
While the Rockets have been rumored to be looking to move away from Ryno for quite some time, the expected trade always included the 2019 first round pick that the team still owns.
Well, Morey is a magician and was able to trade Anderson without giving up their first rounder, and that could be quite valuable. Bill Simmons was complimentary of the trade:
Houston did it again – Anderson’s contract was untradeable and they somehow flipped it into Knight’s contract which is absolutely tradeable. Now they can trade Knight + a 1st + $$$ and get an expensive wing who’s actually decent-to-good. Bazemore at worst. GSW should be pissed.
— Bill Simmons (@BillSimmons) August 31, 2018
The Rockets did, however, have to include rookie De’Anthony Melton in the deal. This is very unfortunate as the team and fans were very high on him. He will be great in Phoenix and should have more opportunity to shine there.
The inclusion of Melton essentially was including a first round pick in the deal. He is first round talent and had one of the best Summer Leagues of anyone.
It was no fun to include Melton, but it definitely keeps the idea of getting a defensive wing alive. As Simmons said, they can now package Knight (or others) and the 2019 first round pick to get another valuable rotational piece.
That’s what makes not including the first round pick so valuable, it could lead to the team being strengthened in the near future or near the trade deadline. Who knows? Maybe someone even better will be available at that time and having that pick can help facilitate a deal.
Daryl Morey and the rest of the front office have done it again, and this time it can help the Rockets with future moves that will help them compete with the Warriors.