Here are three trades that could help strengthen the Houston Rockets’ weak spots as the trade deadline on Feb. 07 steadily approaches.
This Houston Rockets team is in quite a predicament.
On one hand, they have extremely impressive wins against the likes of the Warriors, Raptors, Celtics, and Nuggets. However, they also have multiple losses against some of the worst teams in the league: Magic, Pelicans, and Pistons.
So, where do we go from here? The answer is simple: We need to get healthy, and we need to turn the useless assets on the roster into something useful for the playoffs. Here are three scenarios that could provide the roster with a nice boost:
1. The Houston Rockets acquire Shooting Guard Kent Bazemore from the Atlanta Hawks for PG Brandon Knight, PF Marquese Chriss, and a 1st round pick. Kent Bazemore is essentially a younger, more athletic version of Trevor Ariza, and gives this team exactly what they need on a night in and night out basis.
In any trade the Rockets make, the ultimate question is: Can this player help the team defeat the Warriors in a 7 game series? In this scenario, Bazemore absolutely helps in that regard. He can defend multiple positions and is an above average 3 point shooter. Could the Hawks get more in a Kent Bazemore deal? Sure, but he makes a lot of money, and there are not many teams that are willing/ able to acquire that kind of asset.
2. The Houston Rockets acquire Shooting Guard Terence Ross and Point Guard DJ Augustin from the Orlando Magic for PG Brandon Knight and PF Marquise Chriss. Please take it from this writer, after seeing Ross play in person, the dude can flat out shoot the rock.
He is averaging 14 points a game while averaging 37 percent from behind the 3 point line. It is no secret that the Rockets are looking for multiple “3-and-D “guys, and Ross fits that to a tee. Also, I would actually really like Augustin as a true backup point guard on this roster. You could argue that Austin Rivers is the backup point guard, but he is more of a shooting guard.
3. The Houston Rockets acquire Center Robin Lopez from the Chicago Bulls for Brandon Knight and 1st round pick. As you read this article, please raise your hand if you have screamed at Rockets TV numerous times, due to the fact that we get outrebounded on nearly a nightly basis.
This team, without Clint Capela, is in desperate need of a true center on the roster. Faried was a really nice pickup, but we need more help. NENE is a nice backup, but he is nearing the end of his career. Robin Lopez could be a real difference maker on the boards. The Bulls are in full rebuild mode and would love to offload Lopez’s contract and add a 1st round pick. This trade would be a no brainer for both teams.
The latest loss to the depleted Pelicans roster was certainly no fun, but I can only hope that this team uses that as fuel (no pun intended) to realize that they need to bring it every single night. They are not good enough to get by on talent alone, and that game was proof of that. As I travel to Denver tomorrow for the game, I expect to see a much better effort from this team. GO ROCKETS!!!