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  • 2017-2018 Rockets

    Mark Berman @MarkBermanFox26
    NBA sources confirm #Rockets trade for Chris Paul. Clippers get Beverley, Dekker, Williams and 2018 first round pick.
    Sources: Clippers agree to trade Chris Paul to Rockets

    Adrian Wojnarowski / The Vertical
    The Los Angeles Clippers have reached agreement on a trade to send All-Star point guard Chris Paul to the Houston Rockets, league sources told The Vertical.

    Paul, 32, agreed to opt in to the final year of his $24.2 million contract, clearing the way for the Clippers to execute a trade with the Rockets and bring back assets for Paul, league sources said.

    The Rockets will send the Clippers a package that includes guards Patrick Beverley and Lou Williams, forward Sam Dekker and a 2018 first-round pick (protected Nos. 1-3), league sources told The Vertical. There are smaller parts to the deal, including non-guaranteed contracts, league sources said.

    Paul had until Wednesday to opt out of the final year of his contract and become an unrestricted free agent.

    Had Paul opted out of his contract, he could’ve signed a new deal that started at $34 million a year. Paul will now be eligible to sign a five-year, $205 million maximum extension with the Rockets.

    Paul had a strong desire to play with Rockets All-Star guard James Harden, which led to the Clippers working out a trade with Houston, league sources said. Los Angeles was able to secure several tradable assets and a draft pick in the deal. The Clippers risked losing Paul for nothing in free agency.

    Paul and Harden discussed the possibility of a partnership at length, believing they can find a way to thrive together, league sources said.

    Paul is a nine-time All-Star, nine-time All-NBA player and a nine-time All-Defensive team member. He played six seasons with Los Angeles after six seasons with New Orleans. For his career, Paul has averaged 18.7 points, 9.9 assists and 2.3 steals per game.

    I don't really do bball, but Twitter seems to think this is a big deal....?

  • #2
    Tim MacMahon @espn_macmahon
    Source on Rockets: "They think they are getting Carmelo or Paul George."

    JD Shaw @JShawNBA
    The Rockets also agreed to trade Montrezl Harrell to Los Angeles in the Chris Paul deal, per @BA_Turner.


    • #3
      Adrian Wojnarowski @WojVerticalNBA
      Source: Terms of Clippers-Rockets deal: For @CP3, Houston sends Williams, Beverley, Dekker, Liggins, Hilliard, Harrell, Wiltjer, FRP + $661K
      Bobby Marks @BobbyMarks42
      Chris Paul reduced his trade bonus from $3.6m to $661k to make the trade work. Cap hit for Houston in 17-18 is $24.6m.
      JD Shaw @JShawNBA
      Houston is acquiring its 36th player of the day, trading for the Sixers' Shawn Long for cash and a second round pick, per @TheVertical.
      Adrian Wojnarowski @WojVerticalNBA
      Philadelphia has traded Shawn Long to Houston for cash and a 2018 second-round pick, league source tells @TheVertical.


      • #4

        Mike D'Antoni on Rockets' trade for Chris Paul and fit with incumbent star James Harden

        Sam Amick
        The Houston Rockets gained ground on the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday, when they traded for nine-time All-Star Chris Paul and took their point guard prowess to a whole new level in the process.

        As if having the pre-eminent point guard coach in Mike D’Antoni wasn’t enough. And as if perennial MVP candidate James Harden didn’t show us last season that he’s one of the best playmakers in the game. Now they have Paul, the Hall of Fame-bound talent who made the bold decision to leave the Clippers in pursuit of his first championship.

        More: Clippers agree to trade Chris Paul to Rockets

        More: Chris Paul's motivation? Trade to Houston moves him closer to a title contender

        More: Chris Paul trade, Phil Jackson saga reinforce power of NBA players

        For D’Antoni, whose best work came during those Phoenix Suns days with the great Steve Nash and who once helped turn Jeremy Lin into a global sensation while with the New York Knicks, it doesn’t get much better than this. His team, which went from 41 wins two seasons ago to a 55-win showing in his debut campaign and a second-round exit at the hands of the San Antonio Spurs, just raised its ceiling again thanks to the competitiveness of owner Les Alexander and the handy front-office work of general manager Daryl Morey.

        Just two nights after being named Coach of the Year during the NBA Awards show in New York, the 66-year-old D’Antoni broke the deal down with USA TODAY Sports on the NBA A to Z podcast on Wednesday. He discussed the vision for using Harden and Paul together, talked about the long relationship he has had with Paul because of his time coaching with Team USA, and shared a sidestory about the time Paul played recruiter for D’Antoni’s son as he was choosing colleges. And as D’Antoni was willing to admit, there’s a six-degrees-of-Golden State component to this monumental move that they hope pays off.

        “We're chasing maybe one of the best teams ever in the history of basketball,” D’Antoni said of the Warriors, who won their second title in three years earlier this month.

        “Nobody wants to go into the season going, 'OK, if you have a really good year, you can come in third.' You just don't want to do that, so we're all in.”

        The following is an edited version of the D’Antoni interview:

        On his plans for making the most of Harden and Paul as a dynamic duo…

        “It's a little early to say that we'll do this or we'll do that, for sure. But I do know, (and) I've always thought that the more point guards you have on the court the better. And we've got, probably, two of the best if not the best in the league. So we'll just have to figure it out a little bit. And the other good thing about it is that there will always be a great point guard on the floor at all times, so it's definitely a positive. And Chris Paul, I've coached him for eight summers with USA Basketball. And he's one of the smartest, and — I've always thought — the best point guard in the league, forever. So we'll figure it out. And we will have different guys on the ball at different times, I'm sure. But again, I just don't see a problem.

        “It's a little bit like USA Basketball. You say, 'Well, wait a minute, you've got LeBron (James) and you've got these guys, how do you figure it all out?' Well, they figure it out. ... That's how our guys (will do it). They're at the point in their careers where it's just a matter of winning, and so we will hopefully figure it out together.”

        On where he was when the deal was going down…

        “Well to be honest with you, because I've been all over the place. And Daryl, they get up in their war room and they to go to work. I was reading in the papers like most of ya, in the sense that I don't really want to know. But I read a couple times that there was a possibility, but there's always those rumors out there that he's looking elsewhere. And I kind of always thought that you usually go back to the team, usually there's a lot of smoke and really no fire. And so I didn't think much about it until late last night, when it was an almost done deal (and) I get a text that it looks good, and so it just kind of went from there. I went to bed, and I got up, and then ... about 11 (central time) I got a text that it's happening, and I walk in the office, and see it up on the scroll that it happened. And then I found out it wasn't official until the afternoon, when we did it. So that's kind of how it goes.

        “I'm in Houston, at home. I just got back from New York. Daryl didn't come out to New York, probably because he was working on different things, or different scenarios, and getting ready for free agency ... and again, I was in one of those great positions. I love the team that we had, and if nothing happened then nothing happened. But if they were able to pull something off, then great. But I just think it turned out great, obviously.”

        On the idea that Harden was asked to do too much last season and why he’s willing to share the load with Paul…

        “Well, (Harden's view) definitely comes into play. It's where it all starts is his willingness to do whatever it takes to win. And again, it started the year before where we moved him over to point guard, and now we're going probably move him back for a large part of the game. He'll still be on the point a lot. They'll share more. And yeah, I think realistically, you look around the league, and I think we kind of maxed out last year. And so now, you had a Hall of Fame point guard on a team that has a Hall of Fame point guard (laughs). And so it becomes more realistic, and — like you said — it will take a big burden off his shoulders. ... You could even go — and I don't know if this is a right analogy or not — but just (think about how) (Stephen) Curry got banged up ... two seasons ago (in the playoffs). He was doing all that, and they don't win. And then you get Kevin (Durant last summer), who takes the pressure off a lot of people, and so they win easily. There's a little bit of, as you chase Golden State you have to keep getting better, and you have to keep adding pieces that are phenomenal, and I just think we did that today.”

        On the Warriors ripple effect that is spreading throughout the league…

        “Yeah, no doubt about it. That's the deal. We're chasing maybe one of the best teams ever in the history of basketball. There's some unbelievable talent, so you just can't stay stagnant. Nobody wants to go into the season going, 'OK, if you have a really good year, you can come in third.' You just don't want to do that, so we're all in, and James has always been all in. That's what makes it nice. That means sharing more of the spotlight, or sharing the ball, or sharing whatever, he's more than willing to do that. And he's always a willing passer, and a willing playmaker. That's why I thought the playmaking thing would work (when he moved Harden to point guard last summer), and that's why I think this will work, because he's willing to do whatever it takes to win. And in any system, whether he's off the ball or on the ball or whatever, he's going to be phenomenal, because he was before I got here. I mean, he had great years. He was …second in the running (for MVP two seasons ago). He was second this year, (and) by adding another player it's not going to take anything from him because he can adapt to the situation and so that's what makes me excited.”

        On whether Morey will be able to land a third star…

        “I can't (discuss it), because — for one — I don't think I'm allowed to talk about anything. And two, I don't know anything. It kind of fits hand in hand. You know what, I trust Daryl explicitly. This is his job, as he trusts me to coach, and it's my job. I might go in and say, 'I like this guy. I like that guy.' Or I'll give him suggestions, like he'll tell me, 'Oh yeah, I like this. I like that.' We'll play off each other, but it just works so much better when you trust the general manager and the general manager trusts you. We stay in our lanes, by and large.

        On his history with Paul…

        “We started in Japan, and then went to China and then went to London, so yeah we had a bunch of summers together. I can tell you, I talked to Chris after the trade went down. I gave him a call, (and) it was the first time I'd talked to him since saying 'hi' to him during a game or something. You know, he's the reason that my son, Michael — who just graduated from Wake Forest — and Chris Paul is the reason. During one of the Olympics, he was the one that rebounded for Chris a lot, and Chris (who went to Wake Forest) talked to him into going to Wake Forest. He talked about what a great school it is, and he was right. So we've had this bond for a long time. I'm so excited to be able to coach him, and I can't wait.”


        • #5
          Tim MacMahon @espn_macmahon
          Mavs have traded Jarrod Uthoff, who has a nonguaranteed deal, to the Rockets for cash considerations.
          I think this means Morey has more tricks up his sleeve...?


          • #6
            Brad Turner @BA_Turner
            JJ Redick interested in joining Rockets if finances can work, per source. He still looking at 76ers, Nets for between $16-$18 million a year

            Don't know him. But I don't know most NBA guys, so...


            • #7
              Ian Begley @IanBegley
              Sources: NYK, Rockets touched base recently on a trade involving Carmelo but didn't gain much traction:…

              Heard of him. Heard he was a jerk.


              • #8
                The too old rule...?

                The structure of the Nene contract with Houston is three-years, $10.9m. Houston is not permitted to give Nene a four-year contract because of the Over 38 rule. The fourth season would have extended past his 38th birthday.

                Bobby Marks, ESPN

                Chris Haynes @ChrisBHaynes
                Houston continues its ultra aggressive approach and has now secured a meeting with free-agent Andre Iguodala, league sources tell ESPN.

                Sam Amick @sam_amick
                To repeat, Paul George isn't going to Boston,Cleveland, or Houston. He's joining Russ & his OKC crew - for Victor Oladipo & Domantas Sabonis

                JD Shaw @JShawNBA
                Houston is expected to get a meeting with Gay this weekend, as a mutual interest exists between the two sides.

                JD Shaw @JShawNBA
                @wojespn confirms JJ Redick has decided not to return to the Clippers.

                Sources: 7-foot-2 Zhou Qi agrees to multiyear deal with Rockets

                Adrian WojnarowskiESPN
                The Houston Rockets have agreed to a multiyear contract with 7-foot-2 Zhou Qi, league sources told ESPN.

                The final structure of the deal is still undergoing final touches, but Qi will join the Rockets for the 2017-18 season, league sources said.

                Qi, who is from China and was the 43rd pick in the 2016 NBA draft, comes to the Rockets 15 years after the franchise drafted Hall of Famer Yao Ming with the No. 1 overall pick.

                While Qi (pronounced Joe Chee) is considered a long-term developmental prospect, his arrival to the Rockets for the 2017-18 season will be met with tremendous enthusiasm in the Far East. Beyond his shot-blocking and rebounding strengths at 7-foot-2, he has shown an ability to stretch the floor as a three-point shooter.

                Qi, listed at 21 years old, played three seasons for the Xinjiang Flying Tigers in the Chinese Basketball Association. He was part of the 2016 CBA champions and was the CBA's defensive player of the year.
                Joe Chee, got it.

                Sam Amick @sam_amick
                Houston has options w/ Iguodala, & chance to go longer on a deal. Long shot though. Trade exception worth $11 mil. Mid level worth $8.4 mil.

                Andre Iguodala's meeting with Houston has concluded. As is almost always the case in these settings, good vibes shared by all.


                • #9
                  Marc J. Spears @MarcJSpearsESPN
                  Warriors free agent Andre Iguodala had an "excellent" meeting with Houston and a contract offer was made, source...


                  • #10
                    Adrian Wojnarowski @wojespn
                    Cleveland's in talks with Houston on a deal to move Iman Shumpert to Rockets, league sources tell ESPN.…


                    • #11
                      Mark Berman @MarkBermanFox26
                      NBA source confirms #Rockets reach agreement with free agent forward PJ Tucker.
                      Brian Windhorst @WindhorstESPN
                      Chris Paul played big role getting friend PJ Tucker to HOU. Raps offered 3 yrs/$33M, Rockets deal is 4/$32M, partial guarantee in last year
                      JD Shaw @JShawNBA
                      Houston's put together a nice 7-8 man group: Paul, Harden, Ariza, Anderson, Capela, Gordon, Tucker, Nene. Still in need of a back-up PG.


                      • #12
                        Why China and the NBA have been waiting for Zhou Qi

                        Since Yi Jianlian's departure from the Dallas Mavericks in 2012, Chinese fans have been eagerly waiting for a player to fill the void of homegrown players in the NBA left by Yao Ming -- and so has the league.

                        "It frustrates me that there are no Chinese players in the NBA right now," commissioner Adam Silver told reporters before Game 1 of the 2017 NBA Finals. "There's probably more basketball being played in China than anywhere else in the world. And more NBA basketball is being watched in China than anywhere else in the world."

                        Chinese fans got a brief tease when Yi returned to participate in the Los Angeles Lakers' training camp before asking to be released due to concerns over playing time. After a long wait, they now have another possibility. Zhou Qi, the best big man in China, is signing a multiyear deal to join the Rockets, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. The expectations are high for the 2016 second-round draft pick.

                        At 7-foot-2, Zhou should be a promising addition to the Rockets' roster. His game is still raw, which will make it difficult for a team with title ambitions to rely on him immediately, but his ability and potential are intriguing.

                        "Coach [Mike] D'Antoni likes how Zhou Qi plays," Rockets' GM Daryl Morey posted on his Weibo last year. "Coach believes Zhou's a right fit for the team."

                        After the series of trades that Houston made to acquire Chris Paul before the start of free agency, the only quality big men left on the roster are Clint Capela, stretch-4 Ryan Anderson and potentially Nene, if he re-signs with the Rockets. Zhou has a good chance to be the team's third center at the start of the season. Given Nene's age (he'll be 35 when the season starts) and injury history, Zhou should get his opportunities to see the court.

                        His shooting range meets Houston's needs and D'Antoni's style of play. Last season in the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA), he shot 36.4 percent from the FIBA 3-point line on 55 attempts. That's a small sample size, and NBA defenders might not chase Zhou all the way out to the 3-point line early on, but if he proves he can hit shots he'll open up the floor even more for Paul and James Harden.

                        "The young player they had that was picked by Houston is pretty good," Warriors star Kevin Durant said of Zhou days after Team USA played China in the 2016 Olympics. "He is long, he is agile and he can shoot the basketball really well."

                        ESPN's Insider Kevin Pelton translated Zhou's stats from the CBA to project his expected performance in the NBA next season. (Pelton's draft projections loved Zhou in 2016, but they were bolstered by his listed age of 20. Some NBA scouts suspected he was up to three years older than that). While his impressive CBA production from 2014-15 has dipped, there's reason for optimism.

                        "With hindsight, Zhou's 69.6 percent 2-point shooting in 2014-15 was almost certainly fluky; he's made just 57.9 percent of his 2-pointers since then," Pelton said. "Zhou's block rate (9.9 percent) wasn't so much fluky as it was unsustainable; no NBA regular blocked more than 8.0 percent of opponents' 2-point attempts last season.

                        "Even Zhou's more recent translations suggest an NBA-caliber player if he can overcome a significant strength deficit. He's an incredible shot-blocker and has improved on the defensive glass to the point of adequacy. Add in Zhou's ability to stretch out to the FIBA 3-point line and he's an intriguing prospect, though probably not someone Houston can count on contributing right away."

                        Zhang Weiping, one of the top basketball analysts in China, thinks Zhou can earn minutes with his hustle more than his skills early on.

                        "Zhou Qi's arms are very long, that makes him a great rim protector," he said. "He needs to work on getting more rebounds from the defensive end but he's certainly improving every day. He should be prepared to be a blue-collar player for the Rockets and work his butt off to earn his minutes. Houston doesn't really need him to score at this point, but they need him to do all the dirty work out there. And that's his opportunity to shine."

                        If he reaches his potential, Zhou could become exactly the type of modern center NBA teams covet (especially challenging the Golden State Warriors). However, Zhou's biggest problem is his lack of strength. Last year, Houston sent a trainer to China to help Zhou develop.

                        "The trainer has helped me a great deal. I've gained pounds and learned how to be physical," Zhou told ESPN in April. "I am getting much stronger and better training at the Rockets' facility. With the right nutrition and practice, I will be just fine."

                        Yao Ming's shadow looms large in Houston -- for Chinese fans, for the league and for Zhou. But he doesn't need to be Yao. Not right away, and not even at his peak. They play very different games. In fact, Zhou's best chance to make it is that he might just play the exact right game for this moment in the NBA.


                        • #13
                          Sam Amick @sam_amick
                          Nene signs with Rockets for three years, $11 million combined, I'm told.
                          Cody Taylor @CodyTaylorNBA
                          Rockets' pursuit of Iman Shumpert is basically dead, a source told Basketball Insiders.
                          Last edited by H2O4me; 07-02-2017, 03:37 PM.


                          • #14
                            Adrian Wojnarowski @wojespn
                            Sources on @espn: Carmelo Anthony is now open to waiving no-trade clause for Houston or Cleveland.

                            Doesn't he have a reputation as a team killer? Bueller?


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by H2O4me View Post
                              Adrian Wojnarowski @wojespn

                              Doesn't he have a reputation as a team killer? Bueller?
                              He does. But I also think he takes way more heat than what he should up in NY. They are a BAD team. They're poorly run. Phil drove that team further into the ground. Melo needs out of there. He'd fit here, I mean we don't really play defense anyways and that's why we signed PJ Tucker (I'm guessing) He also makes Ariza Expendable. We may dump some of those filler guys and Ariza/Anderson for Melo. If we don't get him I'm likely not watching this year, or until the NBA fixes this superteam nonsense.

                              Edit: Imagine being a Jets/Mets/Knicks fan. I mean being a Houston sports fan is NOT fun (starting to get alot more optimistic, especially with Astros) but that would be brutal.