Laying out the trade
The Rockets entered the offseason with wads of cash and the desire to spend it. Granted, they had to spend the majority of it per NBA requirements but they wanted to spend big to get their three targets. As we now know, the franchise coveted Brook Lopez, Dillon Brooks, and Fred VanVleet and walked away with two of the three.
This should be viewed as a success. But the Rockets were disappointed about missing out on Brooks because they thought they had a deal in place, so much that they went through with their agreed-upon trade with the Atlanta Hawks that sent out several young prospects and draft capital along the way.
The Rockets’ dismay of missing out on Lopez has led many to believe that they could be looking to land another formidable big man. And due to the Rockets’ contracts (as mentioned earlier) Kevin Porter Jr. could be the key to clearing the salaries for a legitimate center.
Now let’s give you what you’ve been waiting for and show you Bleacher Report’s proposed deal.
Rockets land: Chris Boucher
Raptors land: Kevin Porter Jr, 2024 second round pick (via OKC) and 2024 second round pick (via BKN)
The thinking is likely that the Rockets could add a shot-blocker and rim-protector in Boucher who Bleacher Report refers to as “Lopez-Lite”. (just laugh for a quick second). The Rockets finished 29th in defensive efficiency and newly-hired coach Ime Udoka has made it a point to add reinforcements on that end, although the franchise still hasn’t added an enforcer to the front line.
Perhaps B/R is thinking Boucher could fix that. Now let’s get into whether either team would actually go through with it.