The Houston Rockets have given Dwight Howard a deadline to show his commitment to stay with the team. According to the latest NBA rumors, the Rockets will focus their attention on acquiring Nerlens Noel from the Philadelphia 76ers if Howard bolts in free agency.
As mentioned in a previous report, the Rockets gave Howard until June 22 to make his decision to stay and play with Mike D’Antoni or leave for free agency. It is a day before the 2016 NBA Draft and the Rockets may be looking at trades to replace Howard.
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The Sixers has been shopping both Jahlil Okafor and Nerlens Noel ever since the regular season started. They are likely looking for a great return for both but Bret Stuter of FanSided suggested that the Rockets can acquire Noel by trading veterans.
Stuter noted that the Sixers are looking to win as many games as they can but they can’t do that with a team full of young players. He mentioned that the Rockets can send Michael Beasley, Andrew Goudelock and a pair of second round picks for Noel.
It does not look like a fair trade but Beasley came to play in the last couple months of the season. Patrick Beverley may be a better offer than Goudelock and a first-round pick in the future won’t hurt either.
Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni was a former associate coach with the Sixers so there really might be interest from both sides. The Rockets can certainly use Noel’s length in the middle but they will need to polish his offense.
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Nonetheless, these are all speculations but expect the Sixers to be active on draft. On the other hand, the Rockets are looking to bounce back from a mediocre season that saw them barely make the playoffs. They were humiliated by the Golden State Warriors that only played Stephen Curry for about 40 minutes in the entire series.
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