The rest of the NBA still seems waiting to see the fate of Carmelo Anthony before they decide to make any significant moves at the NBA Trade Deadline. There are trade rumors here and there, but most other teams seem cautious because of the Anthony black cloud and the possible impending lockout next summer. But there are a couple teams who may end up being active, and one of them -- the Houston Rockets -- is likely to miss the playoffs.
The Rockets are now just 26-31 after Wednesday's loss to Philadelphia, five games out of the last playoff spot in the Western Conference. And yet, according to Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle, all indications are that they will be very busy in the coming weeks in an attempt to bolster their future, though it's not clear yet which players they may be seeking.
With the trade deadline a week away, there is still every indication that the Rockets will be very active in talks. They still seem very willing to take on contracts, still hoping their expiring contracts and young talent can bring help.
They won't do something just to bolster this season, but that was never the plan, anyway. Daryl Morey has always been trying to find long-term help. And it could come at any position.
The Rockets were among the most active teams last year at the deadline, even though they missed the playoffs. It could happen again.
Other rumors from today:
- As we noted earlier, the Nets and Blazers are discussing a swap centering around Devin Harris and Andre Miller. The Blazers have coveted Harris for quite some time, so it's not surprising to hear his name pop up again.
- Speaking of the Blazers, they are another team that could be active in general next week. As Ken Berger notes, they have two big expiring contracts (Miller and Joel Przybilla), as well as guys like Marcus Camby who could be moved. The problem, according to Chad Ford, is that general manager Rich Cho needs to convince owner Paul Allen to begin the rebuilding process. That's a tough sell, given Portland's rise to sixth in the West.
- The Blazers and Philadelphia 76ers have discussed a swap involving Marreese Speights and Dante Cunningham. The 76ers rejected the deal.
- Tayshaun Prince of the Pistons is a piece that any contender could use, with an affordable, short contract and championship experience. Last night, he admitted that he was open to a trade, telling Vincent Goodwill of the Detroit News that "it would be something I'd definitely look at." He also said that he's tired of the "drama" in the Pistons' locker room and the speculation about his future.
- The Atlanta Hawks want some help at guard and are looking at Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Ramon Sessions, according to Berger. Sessions certainly helped his value with a huge game against the Lakers on Wednesday.
- The New Orleans Hornets remain active, and are one of the few teams likely to take on long-term salary for short-term gain. However, don't expect them to go crazy. Their payroll is $5 million from the luxury tax, and they won't go past that, according to Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated.
- Speaking of the Rockets, many executives believe they could swap shooting guard Courtney Lee for Memphis' troubled shooting guard O.J. Mayo, writes Berger.
- Boston Celtics general manager Danny Ainge admitted on "The Big Show" on WEEI yesterday that the Celtics have been "fielding calls" about potential trades. Boston has a hole on the wings because of Marquis Daniels' injury. Berger writes that they could be in the mix for Cleveland's Anthony Parker.