As the National Basketball Association (NBA) trade deadline approaches, the Houston Rockets are rumored to be looking to trade Omer Asik - and potentially Jeremy Lin - if the New York Knicks would be willing to trade Tim Hardaway Jr. and Tyson Chandler.
The International Business Times reports that Omer Asik had asked to be traded from the Rockets in November. While Houston reportedly had decided to keep Asik, rumor is that management is considering making a trade in light of his $15 million contract for next season.
According to Breathe Cast, the New York Knicks are looking for a strong center, as injuries to Kenyon Martin, Metta World Peace, and Amar'e Stoudemire have weakened their team. Asik's contract is expected to be $8.7 million above the salary cap next season, and ESPN's David Thorpe believes that the Knicks might be willing to trade guard Tim Hardaway Jr. and center Tyson Chandler for him if the Rockets also traded Jeremy Lin.
Lin, who got his first career triple-double in early February, has been drawing some interest in trade talks. The guard for the Houston Rockets has averaged 13.2 points and 4.5 assists per game. Lin had much success and recognition while playing with the Knicks in the 2011 season, but the team saw fit to release him afterward. Lin eventually signed with the Houston Rockets, but he later lost his starting position after the Rockets signed Dwight Howard and thought that Patrick Beverly would be a better fit for the starting lineup. If Lin were traded, the return of Linsanity could create a lot of publicity for the New York franchise.
While the rumored Knicks-Rockets trade might make financial sense for both teams, some analysts believe that it would not greatly benefit either of them. The Knicks would likely not be willing to trade Tim Hardaway Jr., even if Lin could help them at the guard position. Also, the Rockets might want to trade Asik for a more prominent player, as Hardaway Jr. and Chandler would likely only add depth to the Houston roster.
The final trade deadline is February 20.