The Houston Rockets have expressed their interest in acquiring All-Star small forward Carmelo Anthony this offseason, and one of possible scenarios would be a sign-and-trade deal with the New York Knicks with Jeremy Lin and Omer Asik going to the Big Apple and Melo heading to Texas.
Anthony, who is set to become a free-agent this offseason, could find himself teaming up with James Harden and Dwight Howard in Houston, if everything falls in place this coming summer.
Rockets general manager Daryl Morey has already made several big moves for the last two seasons after their acquisition of Harden via trade with the OKC Thunder and Howard via free-agency, and it would not be surprising to see him pulling off another big offseason coup by snatching Anthony from the Knickerbockers.
Despite the hiring of Phil Jackson as the team's president, Anthony could still bolt out of the Knicks and accept a lucrative deal somewhere else. The Chicago Bulls, who are expected to have enough cap space to sign another max player, emerge as the favorite to land Anthony, but a title-contending team like the Rockets could certainly shake things up as far as signing the reigning scoring champion few months from now.
"According to a league source, the Rockets will make a bid for Anthony this summer, even though they probably won't have cap space and would have to orchestrate a creative sign-and-trade. The source said Houston asked the Knicks about Anthony before February's trade deadline," New York Post reported.
Sources indicated Morey believed Harden, Howard and Anthony (despite his tendency to jack up volumes of shots) could form a terrific Big Three and spearhead the Rockets to its third NBA championship.
"The Knicks have held discussions with the Rockets about power forward /center Omer Asik. Even though Rockets president Daryl Morey is the pioneer of advanced statistics and Anthony has never fared well in some efficiency categories, Morey's old-school instincts believe he could form a terrific Big 3 with Dwight Howard and James Harden. Rockets management also believes Anthony has made advancements in the grit department the past two seasons."
Rocket Could Send Lin, Asik in Package for Anthony
The Knicks have expressed their interest in getting a defensive-powerhouse like Asik, but they were also intrigued on a possible reunion with Jeremy Lin, who flourished in a starting role with the Knicks roughly three years ago.
Lin is averaging 12 points and 4 assists in a sixth man role for the Rockets, but his declined numbers are mainly caused by limited playing time he received from head coach Kevin McHale. Lin's return in the Big Apple could reawaken a fanbase that helped the franchise reach all-time high when it comes to its value.
Moreover, Lin and Asik seem to be a perfect fit for Phil Jackson's triangle offense which is expected to be the core of the squad in the upcoming seasons.