The Houston Rockets were knocked out of the 2020 NBA playoffs by the LA Lakers last week. In spite of an impressive regular season, the Rockets' weaknesses were exposed in the playoffs again this year. The LA Lakers made a mockery of Mike D'Antoni's small-ball line up as they obliterated them in just 5 games. As the Houston Rockets' future looks more uncertain than ever before, a lot of NBA trade rumors are making the headlines, and one of them has caught our eye, which could help them get back on track next season.
NBA Trade Rumors: Blake Griffin can be the perfect center for the Houston Rockets' small-ball lineup
The Rockets are in a sticky situation at the moment. Questions are being raised about whether James Harden and Russell Westbrook can ever win a championship together. Their two stars will be each making more than $40 million for the next 3 years, leaving them with little cap space to sign other talented players.
In a recent podcast with Kevin Arnovits, ESPN's Brian Windhorst suggested that trading for Detroit Piston's Blake Griffin can solve a lot of Houston's problems. Brian said:
"If you are going to make a big trade involving Russell Westbrook, there are only certain players you can trade for. Blake Griffin would be one of them. Blake could play small-ball center."
Houston's biggest problem this year has been the absence of a big who can help them with pick and rolls and also rebound. A 6 ft 9" athletic player like Blake Griffin might be the perfect player for the Rockets who can play as their center.
NBA News Update: Blake Griffin's health a big concern
During the 2018-19 NBA season, Griffin averaged 24.5 points and shot an impressive 36.2% from beyond the arc. While this may sound great, the Houston Rockets' have to keep Griffin's health in mind. Blake's career has been plagued with injuries and he played only 18 games last season because of a recurring knee injury.
Speaking further about the possibilities of a Griffin-Westbrook trade, ESPN's Kevin Arnovits told Brian Windhorst:
"Prior to last season, he was a greater than 36% shooter from 3. He is a guy that would snuggly fit into the Houston Rockets' system. He is a better shooter than Westbrook. The problem is the health. I think it's a big gamble."
If the Rockets are ready to take a risk on Blake's health, they might indeed become a much better team next year. It's also interesting to note that Troy Weaver, General Manager of the Detroit Pistons, was previously with the OKC Thunder and had a great relationship with Russell Westbrook. The next few weeks will shed more light on whether this NBA trade rumor holds water as the teams look to upgrade their rosters.
Published 14 Sep 2020, 21:17 IST