Farewell, D-Mo. Welcome, draft pick. On the Houston Rockets’ trade of Donatas Motiejunas

If you didn’t read my reactions today on Twitter, then why aren’t you following me?  Universally, the sentiment from other parts is that the Rockets made out like bandits today, or, at the very least, did very handsomely in securing a possible late lottery pick in exchange for a free-agent-to-be with back concerns.  But if you’re not a fan of this team, it might be hard to understand the disappointment I and many others are feeling at this moment.

It’s not that we don’t recognize that a top-8 protected pick from a fringe playoff team isn’t supreme value for a possible rental.  We do.  And it’s not even that we overrate Motiejunas, as I have seen being charged, and as is usually charged upon fan negativity following the trade of a popular player.  No one here has any misconceptions about what D-Mo is or who he can become.  And most everyone recognizes that the logic behind this deal was sound, and that the Rockets may possibly know more about the severity of D-Mo’s injury than is publicly available.  We’re just simply…disappointed.  It doesn’t always have to be rational.

After the magic of last season, I personally thought we finally had a core built to last, and more specifically, that Motiejunas could be penciled in as the starting four for the next whatever years.  I thought we were finally done with the draft picks and the cap space and the “value”.  But here we are again.  The pick we got back was great “value”.  Well, great.  We’ve had value for years.  I thought we finally had a team.

We’ll see what Donatas Motiejunas goes on to become.  A hard working, defensively sound stretch 4 7-footer, with some of the best post moves in the league.  If he’s healthy, he won’t have anything less than a fine career.  But that story has yet to be written.  For now, he’s just another player the Rockets developed who has now gone off to sea.  They’ll draft someone else this summer and shuffle the cards yet again.


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

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