Wolves Expected To Re-Engage With Rockets On P.J. Tucker

Now that the Rockets have moved James Harden, there’s an expectation that the team will be more open to trading P.J. Tucker as well. A report earlier this week indicated that multiple teams are asking about Tucker, and Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic says the Timberwolves are among the clubs expected to be in the hunt for the veteran forward.

The Wolves, who reportedly inquired on Tucker during the offseason, have been monitoring his situation in Houston since before the draft and have maintained contact with the Rockets since then, according to Krawczynski.

Minnesota’s president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas worked in Houston’s front office before joining the Wolves in 2019, though it remains to be seen whether his friendly relationship with the Rockets’ top decision-makers will help grease the wheels for a potential deal. As Krawczynski points out, Tucker’s versatility and his $8MM expiring contract will make him a logical trade target for several contenders.

Still, the Wolves look like an especially good fit for Tucker, given their lack of reliable options at the power forward spot. Rosas himself has acknowledged that the team could use an upgrade at the four, as Krawczynski relayed earlier in the week.

“The power forward position is probably one of the areas where we have the most questions right now,” Rosas said. “Part of it is there’s some young guys there and we’re trying to get to a good fit. But I wouldn’t be doing my job if we’re not trying to improve and get better and address our needs.”

Having opted for a Harden package loaded with draft picks and swaps, the Rockets would likely prioritize draft assets again in talks for Tucker and would presumably attempt to land a first-round pick. That may reduce the Wolves’ chances, according to Krawczynski, who points out that Minnesota has already traded away a top-three protected 2021 first-rounder and isn’t in a great position to be selling off more picks for a 35-year-old on an expiring deal.

Even if the Rockets do intend to move Tucker, there’s no rush to do so right away, as the trade deadline isn’t until March 25. While we wait to see which other teams might be in the mix for the former Texas Longhorn, it’s worth noting that the Nuggets weren’t among the teams to inquire as of Wednesday night, per Mike Singer of The Denver Post (Twitter link).

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57 thoughts on “Wolves Expected To Re-Engage With Rockets On P.J. Tucker

  1. I Beg To Differ

    Celtics.
    Romeo Langford and Carsen Edwards.

    Gives them perimeter depth with playoff experience, defense, and keeps him away from others in the east.

    Langford and Edwards receive more playing time in Houston to see what they’ve got on a rebuilding club.

    • CamFrost

      That’s not a bad offer at all. I love PJ as a Rockets fan, but he’d be awesome on the C’s. Think they’d prefer picks, but it’d be fun to bring Edwards back home.

      • Lars MacDonald

        The nice thing for the Celtics is that with their TPE from the Hayward trade, they have the flexibility to give picks or young fringe players or a combination of both. It would all depend on Houston’s preference.

    • Curtisrowe

      Problem is the Celtics don’t want to give up on Langford and no one wants Edwards.

      • Sillivan

        Rockets want a future first round pick for Tucker
        Wolves don’t offer any more First

        Rockets don’t want 2019. 6th pick overall Culver

        It means that 6th pick is a bad pick

    • Sillivan

      Only two players don’t want to play for Rockets owner – Ben Simmons and Oladipo

      Rumors said
      Ben Simmons for Oladipo and Tucker

      Add draft picks to make it work

      But, there is always a but

  2. Sillivan

    Tucker is worth a fake First

    Fake First means
    the bad team offers a top 20 protected First
    Offer 2 Seconds if not happening

    • Sillivan

      Pistons offer a top 16 protected First this summer
      That is a fake First
      Offering fake Swaps has become popular

      Now it’s your turn, fake First

      • Sillivan

        According to Shams

        There was a trade talk that
        Rockets get Simmons and picks
        76ers get Irving
        Nets get Harden

        Of course salary filler

  3. Wade Herbers

    Wolves are going nowhere this year so why bother..Dlo is at best a 3rd option……….Edwards needs time to improve his shot selection and shot itself…KAT is waaaaaay too soft on defense , as is 75% of the roster. McDaniels needs a year or two to add 20 lbs of muscle……..Vanderbilt in same situation as McDaniels. Culver/Okogie get another year experience……Malik seems ok , but ya never know with a complete weed freak.

    • buttholesurfer69

      exactly this is almost laughable – like why are giving up stuff for a 35 yo soon to be free agent who – if he has any championship aspirations – is almost a lock to leave next year?

      is pj tucker going to catapult them from 12th to 8th in the west?

    • Little_Dunker_45

      “Complete weed freak”? Lol I bet you still have to ask ur parents permission to watch Footloose

      • KnickerbockerAl

        Russell is looking disappointing so far. Give it more time. I agree a defensive 4 to backup KAT is exactly what they need. It’s why I thought they might trade down for Okongwu. A defensive 4 is a lot easier to find than a third option. Too bad they missed on Achiuwa. He should of went higher then Heat. He could of been perfect. Still a guy like Noel playing with KAT works. He only got 5 mill (Knicks 1yr) and will be a FA. He probably avgs a double double next to KAT. And plays good D. Minny has been a little disappointing so far. I’d give it more time. Ten teams make playoffs this yr. They should be there at 8-10.

  4. Walladipo and Wood

    It will be much easier for the Rockets to keep Tucker after trading away Harden. They had close to zero cap flexibility with two players on super-max deals.

    PJ Tucker is an excellent defender and also extremely accurate at shooting threes from the corner making him the perfect 3 and D guy. He’s also one of the most durable players the league has seen since AC Green.

    • Lars MacDonald

      Why would they want to keep him in 2021? He’s on an expiring contract, they don’t have enough talent to compete for the championship, and they can acquire more assets if they trade him.
      Also, they can resign him next year if they want him back.

      • Walladipo and Wood

        You’re assuming they don’t have enough talent to compete, when in fact they very well could. Christian Wood is having an amazing season and should be a lock for most improved player. John Wall is also playing well and they should be even better once Oladipo joins the team. Their X-factor right now is Jae’Sean Tate who has been a real find for them and has become an integral piece in their rotation.

        • CamFrost

          What is your definition of compete? As a Rockets fan, I don’t want to go back to being in limbo of the 7-8 seed and missing the lottery like the pre-Harden years. I don’t want to be mediocre. Either be a title contender or become a young up-and-coming squad. The ONLY guy on this roster that should be a long term lock is Wood. No matter how well anyone else has played.

          • Sillivan

            Reality is that Rockets will be between 10th seed and 15th seed

            Future Firsts and real swaps haven been traded by GM

            All Rockets have is 4 Achilles players and 3 other injury prone players

            That is 7

              • Sillivan

                This means
                1. Rockets have traded their own valuable first round picks
                2. Rockets assets collection are 4 Achilles injury players and 3 other injury prone players

                In summary Rockets are dead organization

            • Walladipo and Wood

              That’s your Silli reality. The actual reality is the Rockets will finish nowhere near 15th in the West. They’re much closer to being a top 5 team in their conference than a bottom 5 team.

              • macdaddy96

                No that’s your homer based opinion. Rockets a top 5 seed in the west ? Comical

              • Alex Ashton

                Rockets would be in great shape if Oladipo was a dog, because the rest of their roster is dog meat.

      • KnickerbockerAl

        They should move him. Rockets not doing anything this yr. How’s a 35 yr old undersized 4 going to help your team moving forward. Plus he wants to get paid by Rockets. He feels Rockets owe him. He’s not a good fit with Woods unless he’s coming off bench. Woods needs a big defensive 4. A double double defensive 4 with size. That best case chemistry there. If they had basketballs they would sign Collins next yr. He fits nicely next to Woods. Or go see if Kings are going to give up on Bagley.

  5. cwr_12

    Houston looks so different now then what they were at the beginning of this season

  6. arc89

    Why would the Wolves want a older player with a expiring contract? They are nowhere close to being a playoff team. That being said the Rockets should trade him to the Warriors for Oubre. Oubre is a young player that might fit the Rockets for the future. They would get a young player that could fit their team. Warriors get a veteran player that can shoot outside shots that the Warriors need. Both teas would benefit from the trade.

      • Marty McRae

        The Warriors need to get rid of the low IQ guys: Oubre, Looney, Poole and Smailagic. Tucker is a high IQ guy. Easy call.

        • Alex Ashton

          Valid assessment, but the conclusion that an aging, 1-year rental is the answer is not.

          Also no problem with Looney’s IQ. He’s just too small to be a true Center, too slow to be anything else. Also displaying ZERO shooting range so far this year.

      • Alex Ashton

        Dubs would want Tucker if they really want to compete this year, but I don’t see it. They should be looking to set up for the 2021-22 reload. Healthy Klay Thompson is their ONLY route back to the WC Finals or beyond. Go after Tucker for a shot at maybe making the Second Round? Meh.

    • Marty McRae

      Tucker’s salary falls under the $9.2M IPE they got for Klay, they don’t even have to salary match for him, they can simply flip a 2nd round pick for him.

      I’d rather ship Oubre for Oladipo or Drummond. Better fits.

      • arc89

        The warriors do need a big man to back up Wiseman. once Wiseman was out of the game there was no rebounding on offense. Another game with curry leading in rebounding. Looney was pushed around like a rag doll last night. With this current lineup they are not a playoff team

  7. x%sure

    Tucker is a real smart quick fouler. He anticipates an opponent jumping, gets a quick push in, then jerks his arm away before a ref can react and call a foul. Evidence, his defense of Derozan for the game-winning shot in the TNT upset. Derozan missed, probably sending Texas abuzz.

  8. Marty McRae

    PJ Tucker deserves a much, much better fate than the worst, most clueless single franchise in the NBA, one of the few who are worse off than Houston right now.

    GSW can get him via the IPE they got from Klay, just send over a couple future 2nd round picks and get this over with already, GSW is currently showing they are literally one player away from being elite and a high IQ guy like Tucker is a perfect fit.

    • Cap & Crunch

      And news from back down on Earth………

      The Warriors are one terrible call (Tor game) away from being 5-7 and tied for 12th with the Kings

      If all it takes is some 2nds your in trouble as Minnys will be a lot higher than yours ;) ….. but Im sure Hou will want to help the team thats constantly knocked them out the last decade right; outta respect for Tucker ofc

    • I guess you haven’t watched any games huh? It’s Curry playing his heart out while everyone else (other than flashes from Wiseman and Green’s stellar team D) looks truly horrific. Wiggins jogs everywhere, Oubre looks overawed, Looney is basically a gentle Kendrick Perkins. The only player playing with any pep is Lee.

      • Cap & Crunch

        Warriors should have taken LaMelo – Such a better fit for them down the line- Could you Imagine Lamelo Curry Klay on the court next year whewwww

        They can do just fine with a center like Javale Mcgee

        I dont think Wiseman is a bust but the West lucked w/out them passing on Ball

        • arc89

          Wiseman fits the warriors much better than Ball. Warriors has never had a talent like Wiseman at the center position since Clifford Ray was there. Wiseman is only 19 and played only 3 games last year in college. He is still learning on defense and placement. Ball would have been Wiggins for GSW with better passing skills. Wiseman will be the better player next year just watch. I am guessing you have not watched any GSW games this year.

          • Cap & Crunch

            Ive watched plenty including the last 3 from tip to finish and your kinda making my point for me-

            The Warriors have been awesome with no center for years upon years – Javale would have been just fine

            As a Laker fan Im very very very happy I wont see a Lamelo Curry Klay small ball lineup in the future- That would be just devastating to defend and such a perfect fit for Lamelos game and Klay/Currys health/games as well. Wiggins and Oubre can be dealt any day, you dont hold VIP table for them if the chance occurs

            • arc89

              When you watch the game on Monday you will see exactly what I am talking about with the warriors. Once Wiseman goes out the Lakers will dominate the boards and push around the much smaller warriors. Problem is with no center playing small ball other teams adjusted. They have also struggled against much bigger teams the last 3 years. Every playoff team in the west now has a big center. Javale is a back up center he always has been. You would like the warriors having Lamelo on the warriors because it would mean Lakers dominating warriors for years. Lamelo plays in the east he would get eaten up playing real teams in the west.

              • Cap & Crunch

                LaMelo Curry Klay in 22 woulda been must see TV nightly.
                The spacing, the passing, the lanes created woulda made whoever the other 2 guys were jobs super easy

                It also would have taken miles off Curry and Klay moving forward which is huge

                Its not a knock on Wiseman, I just think Lamelo would have been a dynamic fit- Easy to say today after we got to see Ball in the NBA….it wasnt as easy then ofc predraft …. I think Everyone in the West lucked out, not just Lakers

                • arc89

                  Wiseman will be a beast in a few years better than AD. You will see once he adds some weight and learn the foot work. Ball didn’t impress me at all besides his passing ability. His shot needs a lot of work. Don’t be fooled by this years stats with so many players out the stats will be way above average. So let me know what you think after Mondays game on Wiseman because this will be his biggest test so far.

                • hopper15

                  Lamelo doesn’t play any defense. You can’t put him in the backcourt with Steph Curry.

          • Alex Ashton

            Wiseman may be great one day. Problem is, that day may be Curry’s 36th Birthday. Lamelo was a poor roster fit, Wiseman was a poor timing fit. Should have swapped back and grabbed someone like Haliburton, Vssell, or Deni.

    • From the standpoint of the GM, it does, since (with his pick essentially gone) he can’t really afford to finish last, again. Losing a pick in the 4-6 range in the coming draft is a real bad data point for him.

  9. 2Times

    Houston should give the same reply that Minny gave them when they came knocking for Jimmy Butler

  10. Simmons>Russ

    Isn’t Tucker exactly what the Heat need?

    A power forward that can space the floor, play great defence, doesn’t have a huge ego, doesn’t need much touches, fits their culture, is a win now player and is on and expiring contract.

    Swap Kendrick Nunn, Meyers Leonard and a second round pick for Tucker.

    1. Bradley. Dragic
    2. Robinson. Herro
    3. Butler. Iggy
    4. Tucker. Precious. Harkless
    5. Adebayo. Olynyk

    Plus it opens up an extra roster spot

    • Cap & Crunch

      Kinda what 20 teams need tho, but they need 2020 Tucker not 2021
      Tucker so far…..he’s been bad…. real bad…..but one can factor that team dynamic for most of it right now

      Feels like a Boston guy in the end somehow ….he picks up his game hes worth the late 1st as a piece from them

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