It’s no secret that the Houston Rockets lack depth as it pertains to their second unit, but could Alec Burks be the answer to this problem?
The Houston Rockets have significantly lacked depth on their bench, as they’ve essentially only had Ben McLemore to count on this season as it pertains to reserves who can shoot the triple. Sure Chris Clemons has provided valuable contributions, but coach Mike D’Antoni has shown he doesn’t necessarily trust Clemons, as he’s only played the rookie guard 9.4 minutes per night.
Clemons was converted from a two-way deal to a standard NBA contract, but that had as much to do with trade benefits as it had to do with his play on the court. Clemons happened to be a great find for general manager Daryl Morey, as he was an undrafted free agent who happened to shine for the Rockets. Despite Clemons’ stellar play, it’s clear the Rockets need another shooter, and Alec Burks could be the answer to that problem.
Burks is currently with the Golden State Warriors, who are the Rockets’ arch nemesis, and the Dubs have made it known that Burks could be had in a trade, according to Monte Poole of NBC Sports. Burks is currently averaging 15.5 points per game during the 2019-20 season and is a career 35.4 percent shooter from downtown. But more than just that, Burks is only making $2.3 million this season, which makes it much easier for the Rockets than landing Robert Covington or even Davis Bertans, who the Rockets could also use.
From a salary standpoint, the Rockets could land Burks by solely trading Nene, but the Warriors would surely want a draft pick as well. This would also be worth it from the Rockets standpoint, as they don’t have the ability to land many players based on their current cap situation and adding a 15.5 point scorer could make all the difference for the Rockets. From the Warriors standpoint, they could waive Nene and shed his salary immediately after landing him.
In addition, Burks has playoff experience from his time with the Utah Jazz, and he’s a 6-foot-6 sniper, which helps the Rockets from a size standpoint also. Burks is currently shooting 34.8 percent from downtown, but that would surely improve playing alongside Russell Westbrook and James Harden, who could help get him open shots.
Landing Burks would be a major acquisition for Morey and the Houston Rockets, not only because he provides shooting and size, but also because he could be had for very little from the Rockets. On top of that, the Rockets could also steal Burks away from the Los Angeles Lakers or the LA Clippers as well.