Alessandro Gentile tells Italian website BasketNet he will be in training camp with the Rockets next month. Houston owns the rights to the 25-year-old swingman after acquiring them in a draft night trade in 2014. Gentile was selected by the Timberwolves with the 53rd pick that year.
“I know that they have been following me for two years,” Gentile said. “[Rockets coach Mike] D’Antoni already spoke to me in 2016 and now they want to see me.”
Gentile has been playing in Europe since 2009 and spent last season with Virtus Bologna in Italy. He’s a two-time Italian League all-star and was named Finals MVP in 2014.
The Rockets were hoping to have Gentile as part of their entry in the Las Vegas Summer League, but he needed surgery for a fractured finger on his right hand. It’s the second surgery on the hand in two years, but he says the latest procedure fixed the problem.
Gentile said he is looking forward to playing alongside Chris Paul after talking to fellow Italian Marco Belinelli about the experience. Belinelli was Paul’s teammate for two seasons in New Orleans.
Winning a regular-season roster spot may be difficult, but there should be at least one roster spot available in Houston, even after second-round pick De’Anthony Melton signs his first NBA contract.
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Edwards and Qi are both guaranteed?