What a trade could look like
Buddy Hield has a contractual number of $18.6 million in 2023-24, which wouldn't be an issue for the Rockets from a salary standpoint. The simplest way for Rockets GM Rafael Stone to make the math work would be to include Kevin Porter Jr., who holds an annual number of $15.9 million.
Let's take a look at a potential deal between the Rockets and Pacers.
The Pacers, and every other team, for that matter, have no interest in Porter. He's alleged to have committed a rather heinous act of domestic violence and is facing three felonies as a result of a brutal and despicable attack.
This will surely be the last straw for Porter, who has had an abundance of opportunities and second chances. NBA commissioner Adam Silver is about to drop the hammer on a suspension and rightfully so.
The NBA will seize the opportunity to take a stance and illustrate their disdain for players who don't respect women. After all, it's a privilege to put on an NBA uniform.
Porter also presents a major PR nightmare for any team acquiring him, and the Rockets are going to have to pay for that in any potential deal. For this reason, the Rockets will have to pony up a first-round pick to offset the inclusion of Porter.
On the surface, this seems like too much, as Rockets fans would surely love to keep the Brooklyn Nets' first-rounder. And justifiably so, as the Nets could very well be bottom-feeders in the Eastern Conference this upcoming season.
But in any trade, you have to give up something legitimate to acquire a legitimate asset. Oftentimes that requires a team to rid themselves of valuable and desireable pieces.
And especially if you're the Rockets, and you're attaching Porter, who holds negative value.