Report: Houston Rockets open to trading third overall pick for star

Could Brandon Ingram join the Houston Rockets this summer?
Could Brandon Ingram join the Houston Rockets this summer? / Carmen Mandato/GettyImages

The rumors don't stop, do they?

What more can we say? The Houston Rockets have the third pick in the upcoming NBA Draft. As a decent team, there's an expectation that they could trade it. Isn't this old news?

Sure. With that said, it keeps finding new legs. Recently, Michael Scotto of HoopsHype heard that the Rockets could shop the pick. Unsurprisingly, they could be looking to move it for a star.

Is that the right move?

What options will the Houston Rockets have?

Here's the thing - it takes two sides to make a trade.

There's little doubt that the Rockets would like to trade for "a star". If Luka Doncic demanded a trade this summer, the Rockets would be interested in him.

Something tells us that isn't going to happen.

So, who would the Rockets target? We've already extensively expounded on the merit of trading for Mikal Bridges. If the Rockets can destabilize the Nets and keep their 2025 pick, it's worth paying a hefty cost.

Otherwise? The market is uninspiring. The Rockets have been regularly linked to Donovan Mitchell. We don't love it. Mitchell is going to cost considerably more than the third overall pick. We're not sure if he fits with the rest of this core, and more broadly, we don't think he moves the needle enough for this Rockets team.

Brandon Ingram? Eh. He's coming off of a down year, and there are no assurances that his best season will come. Lauri Markkanen could be an intriguing option, but we suspect he's untouchable.

Is there even a star worth trading for?

Houston Rockets can afford to be selective

Who knows?

Giannis Antetokoumnpo could shock the world with a trade request. Joel Embiid could too. The NBA is unpredictable, and the Rockets can afford to keep an open mind.

Still, it feels unlikely that the right star will shake loose this summer. If the Rockets can orchestrate the right deal with the Nets, it could be worth bringing in Bridges. Otherwise, it might be wise to simply use the third pick on a prospect.

Until draft day, all we can do is speculate.