3. Rockets send Granville Waiters to Bulls for 2nd-round pick
After spending his first two seasons with the Indiana Pacers, Granville Waiters joined the Houston Rockets in advance of the 1985-86 season. The 6-foot-11 center sat at the end of the Rockets’ bench, which isn’t all that surprising, considering how the Rockets had both Ralph Sampson and Hakeem Olajuwon.
After going 51-31, the Rockets made it to the NBA Finals that season, but eventually fell to the hands of the Boston Celtics within six games. Waiters didn’t contribute much, as he played 3.6 minutes per game that season, which meant the Rockets didn’t need him in the slightest.
For this reason, it made sense for the Rockets to try and flip Waiters for whatever they could get in return, but Waiters’ value was certainly low, as he had a very unsuccessful three years in the league by that point. Fortunately, Rockets GM Ray Patterson reached a deal with Jerry Krause and the Bulls, which netted a second-round pick in the 1989 NBA Draft.
This was better than what the Rockets sent away for Waiters, as they sent a third-round pick to the Indiana Pacers just one year earlier for Waiters. This was the Rockets’ first dealings with Jerry Kraus, and the Bulls were an interesting choice for Waiters.
The Bulls had three centers of their own, not to mention Charles Oakley, who averaged roughly 10 points and nine rebounds per game as a rookie. Waiters played 12.1 minutes per game during his first season in Chicago, while averaging 1.9 points and two rebounds.
But Waiters didn’t last longer than two years in Chicago, as his last season came during the 1987-88 season, which was a year in which he averaged 5.2 minutes per game. Interestingly enough, that season ultimately became his last season in the league, which ended a five-year NBA career.
The Rockets would later include the draft pick they acquired in the Waiters deal in a trade to land Cedric Maxwell, who had won two NBA titles with the Boston Celtics, while being named the NBA Finals MVP during the 1981 Finals. Maxwell spent two seasons in Houston, albeit in a reserve role.
Next: No. 2