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Kevin Love and a trip to the trade machine

Quick heads up, the Houston Rockets have been connected via trade rumors to a major star. This is the fourth time in four summers, and the last two actually went through, so maybe there’s a pattern emerging. After not landing a franchise caliber player in at least nine minutes, Houston’s due for another one, right? That being the case, let’s take a journey down the trade machine rabbit hole, laying out the ways that the Rockets could pick up that next piece.

Target numero uno right now appears to be Kevin Love, the floor spacing power foward that Houston has been (not) secretly pining after for years. He’s big, he’s tall, he shoots threes at a crazy clip and his outlet passes are based on some kind of superpowers that mankind can barely comprehend. There’s only one solution for star players who want out of their current teams: come to Houston! Beards are en vogue in H-town, which should suit Mr. Love just fine.

Don't expect any of the other trade packages to be anywhere near realistic

Don’t expect any of the other trade packages to be anywhere near realistic

So that’s about what we’re looking at. Draft picks can’t be put into the venerable ESPN trade machine, but let it be known that Houston has the 25th (1st round) and 42nd (2nd round) overall picks this draft, all of their own future draft picks as well as a few bonuses: three 2015 second rounders (including Minnesota’s own) and a 2017 second rounder. Keeping Parsons would be great, but you can reasonably expect him to have to move in any realistic deal for any of the big names. Of course, if the Timberwolves slipped on a pile of stupid pills, wouldn’t this be a deal for the ages?

See? Ridiculous.

See? Ridiculous.

Know what? Let’s assume every GM fell into the stupid pills pile and are force feeding each other. What trades are technically possible for Houston? There are a few other big name players out there, such as Carmelo Anthony. This sign and trade technically works (if he moves before hitting free agency, which he won’t, no matter how many stupid pills someone eats).

New York has a horrible cap situation they have to maintain, so here's Lin, someone James Dolan would never want back.

New York has a horrible cap situation they have to maintain, so here’s Lin, someone James Dolan would never want back.

How about Rajon Rondo, rumored to be available for the right price. (This is the wrong price)

Welp, that should cover the salaries.

Welp, that should cover the salaries.

What about… okay, who else is vaguely up for grabs? Let’s say Deron Williams. Yeah, Deron’ll do. He’s got a nasty kicker that makes him hard to trade for but hey, Houston’s got some nice, bloated contracts to move.

Brooklyn wants this package back, right? It's like HBAP.

Brooklyn wants this package back, right? It’s like HBAP.

Let’s dream bigger. Let’s get the the gang together, Rondo and Love, both!

Boston and Minnesota can fight over the scraps

Boston and Minnesota can fight over the scraps

Okay, now that’s a lot of outgoing salary but if anyone can manufacture a bench it’s Daryl Morey. Now for the final test. Just how ridiculous can this get? How many stupid pills would it take to break the trade machine?

All I'm saying is that it's technically possible wink wink

All I’m saying is that it’s technically possible wink wink

Oh, mister George, how did you get in there? It’s fun to dream, but realistically the Rockets can only afford one star player this offseason. Yes, I know it’s disappointing, but not nearly as disappointing as losing in the first round in six games after adding yet another franchise level player. Next time they’ll just have to make sure not to do that, then.

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