Executives: Rockets 'Likely Suitors' for Russell Westbrook


According to The Athletic’s Sam Amick and Brett Dawson, executives around the NBA consider the Houston Rockets a likely suitor for Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook:

“Rival executives have also pinpointed the Houston Rockets as a likely suitor, which would come as no surprise considering the way general manager Daryl Morey has prioritized the pursuit of stars during his entire career (not to mention the possible reunion between Westbrook and his old Thunder teammate James Harden). The notion of Westbrook sharing the floor with two other ball-dominant guards is unorthodox, to say the least, but Morey has long held the belief that landing as many elite players as possible is the path to championship glory.”

This follows Adrian Wojnarowski’s report that Westbrook and his agent “are engaged with Thunder general manager Sam Presti about the next steps of Westbrook’s career, including the possibility of a trade before the start of next season.”

The Rockets pop up each time a star player is rumored to be on the trading block. So, it’s no surprise to see them being pointed to yet again. Westbrook and James Harden also have a history of playing together back before Harden was traded away from the Thunder. However, that was before both turned into MVPs and two of the best players in the NBA. But given the way their games have evolved, it’s far from certain that these two could co-exist on, or even off the court.

Paul factor to this equation. It’s preposterous to envision the three of them on the court together, let alone working well as a trio. If the Rockets trade for Westbrook, Paul must be shipped elsewhere.

The NBA is going to be as wide open as it has been in a decade next season and perhaps that has the always active Daryl Morey thinking Westbrook would put Houston over the top. And while that result is possible, major on the court issues and locker room frustrations are the far more likely outcome.