SH Blog: Rockets trade with Bucks, Pau Gasol on the block, Bulls unlikely to make moves

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The Houston Rockets have dominated the off-season thus far with two trades in two days, as they continue to gain assets in hopes to make some blockbuster deals. Find out who they traded and what they plan to do, who the Warriors want and don’t want, Pau Gasol rumors, update on Knicks players plus much more in today’s news:
  • After trading away Chase Budinger yesterday, the Rockets made another trade today, from Adrian Wojnarowski: “The Houston Rockets have traded center Samuel Dalembert and the 14th pick in Thursday’s NBA draft to the Milwaukee Bucks for the 12th pick and three players, league sources told Yahoo! Sports. In addition to the 12th pick, the Rockets will receive guard Shaun Livingston and forwards Jon Leuer and Jon Brockman. The deal allows the Rockets to move up in the draft as they continue to try to compile assets for a possible trade for Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard or Los Angeles Lakers forward Pau Gasol. Houston now owns the 12th, 16th and 18th picks.”
  • Houston is making moves, but it’s not to acquire Pau Gasol, reports Ken Berger: “While rival executives believed Houston’s target was Lakers forward Pau Gasol, a person familiar with the team’s strategy debunked that idea and said the Rockets front office has cooled significantly on the 7-foot Spaniard. Gasol made sense when Houston was pursuing him in the past year and was trying to set up a three-year window with Kyle Lowry, Gasol and another big-man target, Nene. But the person briefed on the Rockets’ current plan doubted Gasol would make sense for the franchise anymore.”
  • Berger also updated his report about the Kings resisting an offer from the Rockets to move Tyreke Evans: “Among several avenues the Rockets are exploring would be a trade with Sacramento for the No. 5 pick in a deal that likely would send Tyreke Evans to Houston, sources said. The teams have discussed several scenarios, and while one person briefed on the talks described the deal as “getting close,” rival executives have gotten the strong impression that the Kings are streadfastly resisting the Rockets’ overtures.”
  • The Lakers are shopping Pau Gasol around, according to Chad Ford and Marc Stein: “Sources told ESPN.com that the Lakers have been contacting teams in an effort to acquire a top-10 pick in Thursday’s draft. The Lakers also are seeking an established player along with the pick if they’re to part with Gasol. A deal was not imminent as of Wednesday afternoon.”
  • The Hawks are interested in Pau Gasol, according to Mike Bresnahan: “The Atlanta Hawks have been pursuing Pau Gasol, The Times has learned. Nothing imminent, but Josh Smith would be key piece going to Lakers.”
  • The Clippers may be looking to bring in Lamar Odom while shipping Mo Williams, according to Marc Stein: “The Los Angeles Clippers have engaged in trade discussions to bring Lamar Odom back to the L.A. team that drafted him, according to sources close to the situation. Yet the deal, sources said, could hinge on the willingness of a third team to take on the contract of Clippers veteran guard Mo Williams, which would allow the Dallas Mavericks to send Odom to the Clippers with no significant money coming back to the Mavericks.”
  • The Bobcats are willing to trade their second pick in the draft as long as Tyrus Thomas is included in the deal, from Michael Lee: “According to multiple sources, the Bobcats are trying to convince teams interested in the second pick to also take back disappointing power forward Tyrus Thomas, who has more than $26 million remaining on his contract. Thomas is coming off the worst season since his rookie year as he averaged just 5.6 points and 3.7 rebounds. When asked if teams would be willing to touch Thomas, one Western Conference executive said, “I don’t think so.”
  • According to Alex Kennedy, Ray Allen to Miami is a forgone conclusion: “The general consensus around the NBA is that Ray Allen will sign with Miami. “Barring a change, he’ll join the Heat,” said a league source.”
  • Yesterday, we showed you a report from Deadspin of Clyde Drexler’s cruel comments towards Magic Johnson. Drexler is denying the quotes, according to Jonathan Feigen:  ”Clyde Drexler to release statement denying critical comments attributed to him about Magic Johnson in Jack McCallum’s Dream Team book.”
  • Some got duped about Kevin Garnett, but he still has yet to make a decision. Doc Rivers hopes for a return and plans to play him at center again next season: “I hope he comes back, and I think he will,” said the Celtics’ coach. “I have no basis for that. I just believe that he will.” Rivers added that Garnett and his people have been in contact with director of basketball operations Danny Ainge and are discussing the particulars. If Garnett does come back to the Celts, it’s likely he will again play in the middle. “Yeah, unless we get a center,” said Rivers with a laugh.”
  • Carmelo Anthony thinks his time is coming and apparently played at 251 pounds during the season, according to Marc Berman: “After watching his buddy James win his first title last Thursday, Anthony said that could be him soon. Anthony sent LeBron a congratulatory text message that night.“I believe my time is coming,’’ Anthony said after posing with the statue with his wife La La at a press conference. “I’m a big believer in that. Whether this year or next year, I truly believe our time is coming. We’re going to keep playing for that.’ Anthony has been training for the London Olympics with Tyson Chandler in Los Angeles and said he’s lost 12 pounds, down to 239, since the playoffs ended in the first round in five games to the eventual champion Heat.”
  • Baron Davis hopes to return to the NBA in two seasons, from Anthony Sulla-Heffinger: “Davis is expected to miss all of next season and would be targeting a return in 2013-14. “I hope I [return to the Knicks], I want to come back,” Davis said before the Dyckman Street Ball Tournament. “I want to be a Knick for the rest of my career.’’
  • Amare Stoudemire will look to work with Hakeem Olajuwon in the off-season, according to Jared Zwerling: “A source close to Amare Stoudemire told ESPNNewYork.com that the Knicks’ power forward will work with NBA legend and post-up coach Hakeem Olajuwon later this offseason. Olajuwon will fly to New York in August to train with Stoudemire. The source also saidTyson Chandler might join Stoudemire for the workouts, but that hasn’t been confirmed.”
  • The Bulls have been involved in rumors, but they will likely remain rumors, from Neil Hayes: “Whatever rumors may be circulating about the Bulls doesn’t change the reality that their best opportunity to remake their roster will come next offseason or the offseason after that. Vice president John Paxson and general manager Gar Forman are keeping the big picture in mind. Forman has acknowledged that Derrick Rose’s torn ACL and Deng’s likely wrist surgery are short-terms setbacks on a journey that they hope ends in the franchise’s seventh NBA title.”
  • According to Chris Broussard, the Warriors may have interest in Wilson Chandler: “Lots of teams calling Denver to trade for Nuggets’ young players. 1of several moves being discussed: Wil Chandler to G State for 7th pick”
  • The Warriors hope to keep Brandon Rush, from San Francisco Chronicle: “The Warriors have extended a qualifying offer to swingman Brandon Rush to make him a restricted free agent. The team announced the long-expected move Tuesday. The tender allows Golden State to match any offer Rush receives this offseason. Rush, 26, appeared in 65 games last season after coming to Oakland in a trade from Indiana for Lou Amundson. Rush averaged a career-high 9.8 points, 3.9 rebounds and 1.4 assists in 26 minutes per game.”
  • One player the Warriors hope to move is Dorell Wright, according to Tim Kawakami: “NBA source on Warriors and Dorell Wright: “They’re really trying to move him.” Before, during or after the draft? “Whenever they can.”
  • Chris Paul believes the Clippers would have won the championship this season if not for the Chauncey Billups injury, from Christopher Dempsey: “I tell people all the time had Chauncey not got injured we was going to win the championship,” Paul said. And progress on his recruitment of Billups? “I think it’s going well,” Paul said. “The top priority now is to get him healthy. I think that was the toughest thing for me. When he got injured I was messed up because I know how hard he works and how much he loves to play. It feels a lot better now because I know how hard he’s been working and I know he’s going to be back.”
  • Dwyane Wade was included in Tom Haberstroh’s top 10 list of greatest playoff runs by individuals: “You can argue that Kobe Bryant deserves a spot in this top 10. But Shaquille O’Neal was no longer in his prime when he paired with Wade, and Wade’s 2006 PER and field goal percentage top Kobe’s bests in 2000-01, his personal best stretch that ended with a title. Wade may trail Bryant in total rings, but, statistically, his 2006 run holds the upper hand.”
  • Former Knicks player Pat Cummings passed away yesterday at the age of 55: “Cummings made his name playing in a Knicks’ frontcourt with Patrick Ewing and Bill Cartwright from 1984-88. After four years at the University of Cincinnati, the Bucks chose the 6-foot-9 forward from Johnstown, Pa., in the third round of the 1978 draft. He was traded to the Mavericks in 1982, and in 1984 signed with the Knicks as a free agent. Later, Cummings also played for the Heat and the Jazz.”
  • Do you know who Shaquille Johnson is? If you don’t, check out this must-watch dunk clip from House of Highlights.

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