Grade the Trade: Rockets land a star, give up on Jalen Green in blockbuster proposal

The Houston Rockets have been linked to Cavaliers star guard Donovan Mitchell. Can they pool their assets to win the bidding and trade for their next star?
Donovan Mitchell and Jarrett Allen, Cleveland Cavaliers
Donovan Mitchell and Jarrett Allen, Cleveland Cavaliers / Jason Miller/GettyImages
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Last season was just about a perfect season for the Houston Rockets.

They certainly would have liked to make the postseason, which they came just a few games shy of doing, but for a team that had one of the league's two worst records for three straight years, making it to .500 and establishing a well-balanced team led by a successful head coach was quite the accomplishment. Veteran additions like Dillon Brooks and Fred VanVleet were exactly what the doctor ordered, and young players like Alperen Sengun and Jabari Smith Jr. took steps forward.

Now their attention turns to this summer, and how to continue growing as a team. Landing the No. 3 overall pick via the Brooklyn Nets' pick that they owned from the James Harden trade was a major boon, even if it comes in what is largely considered to be a weak draft. They could take things slowly, add another prospect and continue to grow a deep and young core.

The Houston Rockets could trade the No. 3 pick

The Rockets could also pivot and use the No. 3 pick and a couple of their young players to add a No. 1 star, someone to take the reigns and slot VanVleet and Sengun into more comfortable spots in the pecking order. They have (rightfully) rejected the possibility of a reunion with James Harden, but who else could be available on the trade market and worthy of pushing more chips in?

Kelly Iko covers the Houston Rockets for The Athletic and reported that the Rockets are open to trading the No. 3 pick in the right deal, and that they are closely monitoring the status of extension talks between All-NBA guard Donovan Mitchell and the Cleveland Cavaliers. If Mitchell were to hit the trade market the Rockets could wade into the trade waters.

What would a deal for Mitchell look like? Is it worth making such an offer? Let's dig into the specifics and evaluate the deal for Houston to see if it's the all-in move this team should make.