When the Houston Rockets were pursuing their public desire to trade big man Omer Asik, they made a call to the Brooklyn Nets and asked about the availability of point guard Deron Williams, NBA sources told ESPN New York's Ohm Youngmisuk. The Rockets were willing to discuss swapping Asik and point guard Jeremy Lin for Williams, but the Nets reportedly "balked" at the idea of trading away their starting point guard for Asik and Lin.
Sources told Howard Beck of Bleacher Report that the deal "seems dead."
Williams, after all, was a major selling point to get a trade done with the Boston Celtics last summer. Kevin Garnett had to waive a no-trade clause in his contract, and he and Paul Pierce ended up agreeing to leave Boston because of the opportunity to play with Williams.
The point guard signed a five-year, max contract extension in 2012 and despite his ankle injury suffered earlier this year has played well since returning. In six December games, Williams is averaging 17.8 points and 10 assists per game while shooting 50.7 percent from the floor.
With Nets center Brook Lopez now ruled out for the season because of a broken foot -- the diagnosis occurred after the trade talks -- the Rockets at least planted a seed of possibility in the Nets front office. At the least, Houston was doing its due diligence.