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NBA Rumors: Houston Rockets Shop Dwight Howard; James Harden, Ty Lawson Eye Potential David Lee Swap

( [email protected] ) Feb 05, 2016 07:58 AM EST
The NBA trade deadline is looming over the basketball community. While teams have swapped and signed some players this season, the big names remain mum on their futures. That is, major deals appear to be kept under wraps until all parties finally sign the agreements. Throughout the season, however, the Houston Rockets have been at the center of the NBA trade talks.
Jan 30, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard (12) shoots the ball as Washington Wizards center Marcin Gortat (13) defends during the first quarter at Toyota Center. Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The NBA trade deadline is looming over the basketball community. While teams have swapped and signed some players this season, the big names remain mum on their futures. That is, major deals appear to be kept under wraps until all parties finally sign the agreements. Throughout the season, however, the Houston Rockets have been at the center of the NBA trade talks.

It is no secret that the Houston Rockets aim to build a team around James Harden. Hence, basically all acquisitions by the NBA team have The Beard as a primary consideration. NBA stars, albeit talented, have been booted out of the Houston Rockets roster due to their inability to mesh with Harden. As the head playmaker and shooter of the team, Khloe Kardashian's rumored beau needs a reliable team around him as he works his magic in the hardwood court.

This leads to the rumored rift he has against Dwight Howard. Ever since the former Los Angeles Lakers star entered the Houston Rockets, fans have noticed an uneasy dynamic between him and Harden. Moreover, speculations arose that The Beard refuses to fuss over Howard despite the latter's solid reputation in the NBA. As for Howard, he has reportedly not exerted any effort to win Harden's trust and confidence.

Hence, Howard has become a staple topic for NBA trade rumors. The list of teams allegedly interested in the big man includes the Sacramento Kings, Chicago Bulls and Boston Celtics. Among the basketball squads, the Marcus Smart team is reportedly the most aggressive in signing Howard.

"[T]he Celtics have engaged the Houston Rockets in talks about a possible deal for Dwight Howard," reveals Frank Isola of the New York Daily News. He cautions, "Howard can opt out of his contract this summer, and considering his back and knee issues, it doesn't make much sense for Boston GM Danny Ainge to use the assets on a player with declining skills and a battered body."

This information was echoed by A. Sherrod Blakely of the CSN New England who described the report as "accurate." However, he noted that it is still too early to determine the outcome of the potential deal.

"The reported interest on the Boston Celtics' part in Houston's Dwight Howard is accurate, but talks (for now at least) aren't expected to go much further than the discussion phase of negotiations," said Blakely, quoting a league source.

In exchange for Howard, the Boston Celtics are reportedly mulling over a swap involving David Lee. Like the Houston Rockets center, the former Golden State Warriors star has been hounded by NBA trade rumors this season. Experts point to the diminished and almost non-existent minutes of Lee on the hardwood court as the potential reason for the Boston Celtics to get rid of him.

For his part, Howard remains nonchalant over the NBA trade rumors surrounding him. He shared via ESPN, "Nobody talks about that stuff."

Howard added, "My mind is on trying to get better every day, and I felt like I was on a good stretch and got hurt. Just trying to get back, that's my mindset. We don't sit around and talk about, 'Hey what's going to happen next year?' Because that means you're really not in, and you don't want to have those thoughts."

Tags : NBA, Houston Rockets