Rockets 'ramping up' efforts to trade Omer Asik, deal expected by Dec. 19

Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

It looks like the Rockets will ship out Asik this month.

The Houston Rockets have ramped up negotiations with other teams in an effort to trade big man Omer Asik, ESPN.com's Marc Stein reports. He adds that the team is "determined" to finalize a deal by Dec. 19, which would give the team added flexibility in subsequent trade negotiations:

Prior to Dec. 15, players who signed during the 2013 offseason are ineligible to be traded. By waiting until then, the Rockets should have a wider range of players available to them, plus they'll be able to repackage any acquired players in later deals if they choose to do so.

By completing a deal now, the Rockets would be far more limited, as various CBA restrictions prevent players from being dealt. So while an Asik deal is practically inevitable at this point, expect Houston to wait a little bit longer before actually pulling the trigger.

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