5:38pm: Wojnarowski clarifies that the Rockets have discussed possible Asik trades with teams over the past few months, but those talks aren’t necessarily active (Twitter link).
5:17pm: The Rockets have asked for an “impact player” in return for Omer Asik in trade talks with multiple teams, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. That’s in spite of a report last night indicating that Houston had denied Asik’s trade request.
Teams have deemed GM Daryl Morey‘s asking price too high so far, Wojnarowski writes. The GM would prefer to acquire a frontline player who can help the team compete for a championship this year, but if he can’t find someone like that for Asik, he’d like to get a largely unprotected 2014 first-round pick. The Rockets were in talks with the Wizards before they traded for Marcin Gortat last month, but Morey was unwilling to take back Emeka Okafor, as the Suns did.
Morey and Andy Miller, the agent for Asik, have been regularly discussing how the Rockets can offload the 7-footer, as Wojnarowski reports. Asik’s camp this week reiterated the trade request they originally made back in July, when the Rockets were closing in on signing Dwight Howard. A rumor around that time suggested the Rockets might trade Asik for Pelicans power forward Ryan Anderson, but New Orleans never showed much interest, and Wojnarowski hears the Rockets have been unwilling to get the Pelicans to reconsider.
Just as Woj’s report surfaced, the Pelicans announced center Greg Stiemsma will be out six to eight weeks with a left knee injury that he suffered Tuesday. Perhaps his absence will prompt GM Dell Demps to listen more closely to what Morey has to offer, though that’s just my speculation. It’s unlikely that any deal will take place before December 15th, when players who signed this past offseason may be included in deals, Wojnarowski points out.