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DraftExpress: Houston Rockets making a “major push” to acquire 4th pick

From DraftExpress, via Twitter:

NBA source says both Detroit & Houston are making a major push to trade w/Minnesota to get Cousins with the 4th pick. “His stock is rising.”

It seems they’ve decided it would be wiser to use those assets now rather than to take the chance with Chris Bosh.  I can’t say I blame them.

Interesting that word has them after Cousins.  He supposedly measured out as the best prospect in the entire draft in John Hollinger’s statistical ranking, a model which probably is not too far from what Morey and co. are doing.  Still, it’s hard to tell if this indeed is a smoke-screen and that it is someone else whom they are after.  Here’s Henry Abbott on DeMarcus Cousins.

A bidding war with Detroit for the #4 would leave the Rockets too depleted for the Bosh sweepstakes, simply by virtue of the fact that the Pistons sit at #7, a pick far more valuable than that of Houston’s own #14.

The Wolves sit with roughly only $35million of salary obligations for the 2010-2011 season, a figure so far beneath the expected salary cap that it is completely conceivable that Trevor Ariza or Kevin Martin be included in the deal, if necessary.  Other possibilities, in various combinations, would be Jordan Hill, Chase Budinger, the #14, the New York Knicks considerations, and if the Rockets are truly hot after Cousins, even point guard Aaron Brooks.

With the Wolves seemingly set at point guard, and with Love and Jefferson, you would think their primary interest would be in one of the Rockets’ numerous wings, from Trevor Ariza, to Chase Budinger, to even Kevin Martin, with Ariza probably the likeliest to go.

The Houston Rockets have the assets to top almost anyone in a bidding war, but it will come at a steep price.  Given the uncertainty over both Yao’s future and the Chris Bosh sweepstakes, I personally would have no problem with paying a king’s ransom to move up and grab someone they feel can be a cornerstone.

Update: Chad Ford, via Twitter:

Another strong workout for Cousins in NJ today vs. Favors. He shot the lights out again. From what I gather it’s now a toss-up in NJ @ 3

I would guess any deal would be contingent upon the route chosen by the Nets.

Update II: Adrian Wojnarowski, via Twitter:

Minnesota offering Jonny Flynn and two first-round picks (16 and 23) to Indiana for a package that includes the 10th pick, sources tell Y!

I wonder if Kahn thinks he is getting Aaron Brooks?

in musings

About the author: Rahat Huq is a lawyer in real life and the founder and editor-in-chief of Red94.net.