3 players the Rockets can get in a P.J. Tucker trade

P.J. Tucker #17 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
P.J. Tucker #17 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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Precious Achiuwa #5 of the Miami Heat (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
Precious Achiuwa #5 of the Miami Heat (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images) /

Houston Rockets trade target #3: Precious Achiuwa

It’s not hard to imagine why Tucker is on Miami’s list, as the reasons are countless. For one, Tucker has the blue-collar approach to the game, similar to that of Jimmy Butler, and brings a defensive tenacity that would fit right in with Miami, who rank 8th in defensive rating.

In this trade proposal, the Heat give up one of their most promising young players in Precious Achiuwa, which won’t come cheap, as the rookie has flashed his potential and had the look of a building block. For that reason, the Rockets have to attach Victor Oladipo, while also landing a future first-round draft pick, which makes it a win-win for both sides.

A package of Tucker and Oladipo would likely be the best combination the Heat could find at the trade deadline, as the market has had the look of a seller’s market, with the Rockets being the primary seller. Oladipo reportedly wants to go to Miami, so the Heat would be at ease with signing him to a long-term contact, as he’s on an expiring deal.

Related Story. 3 trades to send P.J. Tucker to Minnesota

For the Rockets, the 21-year-old Achiuwa is under contract through 2024, before becoming a restricted free agent, if he hasn’t already come to terms on an extension by then. Achiuwa has physical attributes that jump off the page, as he possesses a 7-foot-2 wingspan and a 9-foot standing reach, and has the ability to be a small-ball center, at 6-foot-9.

Achiuwa has the athleticism to beat most power forwards off the dribble and brings a jolt of energy, which helps him on the glass and as a rim protector. Achiuwa is a junkyard dog and plays with a high motor, which is a trait that is invaluable, especially for a rebuilding team like the Rockets.

In Achiuwa’s lone collegiate season at Memphis, he averaged 15.8 points on 52 percent from the field, while nabbing 10.8 rebounds, 1.9 blocks and 1.1 steals per game. Achiuwa currently has averages of 6 points and 4 rebounds, albeit on just 14 minutes per night for Miami.

With the Heat 10-17 and 10th in the Eastern Conference, loading up with Tucker and Oladipo makes sense. The Rockets would have to acquire Andre Iguodala and Kelly Olynk to make the deal work financially, but with both players on expiring deals, such a move isn’t isn’t all that bad, as neither player would stifle their future.

Next: No. 2