The Rockets‘ self-imposed deadline for an Omer Asik deal is right around the corner, which means we should expect to hear plenty of rumors about the big man today. Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld even suggested last night that a trade could be agreed upon today, though nothing is imminent quite yet. Here’s the latest on Asik, who appears almost certain to be on the move by week’s end:
- The Celtics are “increasingly active” in Asik talks and are viewed as the Sixers‘ strongest rivals for the center’s services, according to Marc Stein and Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com. The ESPN duo reports that neither Boston nor Philadelphia is scared off by the $15MM balloon payment owed to Asik in 2014/15.
- According to Stein and Windhorst, many league sources believe one reason Rockets GM Daryl Morey imposed the December 19th deadline in the first place was a belief that he could get a deal done by then with Sixers GM (and former Rockets assistant GM) Sam Hinkie. The Rockets would want to do a deal involving Spencer Hawes and at least one first-round pick.
- The Cavaliers are more likely to act as a third-team facilitator than to acquire Asik directly, according to the ESPN.com report. Stein and Windhorst detail one scenario in which the Celtics would land Asik and send Jeff Green to the Cavs, though Chris Mannix of SI.com hears there’s “no way” Boston will include Green in an Asik deal (Twitter link).
- Although Green and Thaddeus Young have frequently been cited as potential targets for Houston, Stein and Windhorst say the Rockets would be reluctant to take on the long-term contract of either player, since it would negatively impact the team’s ability to lock up Chandler Parsons.
- Stein and Windhorst, as well as Ken Berger of CBSSports.com, report that while the Rockets would love to acquire Paul Millsap, the Hawks‘ interest in Asik is “lukewarm” at best.
- Within Berger’s piece, the CBSSports.com scribe writes that multiple league executives have told him the Rockets are open to packaging Jeremy Lin with Asik. However, considering Lin also has a big salary bump coming next season, sending the two players to the same team is unlikely.
- One scenario that has emerged is the possibility of a three-team deal involving the Celtics and Sixers, with Asik going to Boston, says Berger. However, one league source called it a long shot, describing it as a “weird deal.”
- The Knicks attempted to get involved in the Asik sweepstakes, discussing a potential deal with the Rockets and a third team, according to Marc Berman of the New York Post. Despite their efforts though, the Knicks are on the outside looking in, and are very unlikely to land the seven-footer.
- We heard last night from Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports that the Hawks, Celtics, Cavs, and Sixers are squarely in the mix for Asik, with a “wild card” team in play as well.