Houston Rockets: Top-8 Rockets ranked by trade value

MIAMI, FLORIDA - APRIL 19: John Wall #1 of the Houston Rockets huddles with the team against the Houston Rockets prior to the game at American Airlines Arena on April 19, 2021 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FLORIDA - APRIL 19: John Wall #1 of the Houston Rockets huddles with the team against the Houston Rockets prior to the game at American Airlines Arena on April 19, 2021 in Miami, Florida. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
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Houston Rockets
Kawhi Leonard #2 of the Los Angeles Clippers, Jae’Sean Tate #8 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)

Houston Rocket trade value #2: Jae’Sean Tate

It took Jae’Sean Tate a long time to reach the NBA but the wait appears to have been well worth it. If the Rockets had finished the season with a better record Tate would have received some deserved Rookie of the Year buzz.

Tate, as a rookie, proved that he can be an elite multi-positional defender and at times flashed impressive playmaking chops when given an expanded role. Already 25-years-old, Tate isn’t some can’t-miss prospect but he looks to be a reliable role player for another half-decade.

What really bolsters Tate’s value is his contract. Signed out of Australia’s National Basketball League, Tate is on a deal that will pay him under $2 million annually for the next two seasons and none of the money is guaranteed. Essentially, there is zero downside to acquiring Tate.

To give some perspective to Tate’s value, he is paid like a second-round pick and produces like a player drafted at the tail end of the lottery. His upside likely isn’t at an All-Star level due to his age, but a solid rotation piece for the price of a second-round pick has been and will always be incredibly attractive to NBA front offices.

For the right team, Tate is well worth a first-round pick. Any team up against the salary cap and in need of a versatile wing defender, which sounds like every contender, could use a player like Tate. If his 3-point stroke improves to league average, he could command even more.

The Rockets shouldn’t look to move Tate but if someone comes knocking with multiple first-round picks that might be too much to pass up. Tate will be a free agent in the summer of 2024 and should rightfully cash in.

Next: Trade value #1

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