The Houston Rockets have three first round picks, including the #2 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft, but they’d love to acquire #1 overall pick in a trade with the Detroit Pistons to grab Oklahoma State’s Cade Cunningham.
The Rockets went 17-55 last season for the worst record in the NBA, yet the Detroit Pistons won the NBA Draft Lottery and the last-place Rockets were awarded the #2 pick.
|2021 NBA DRAFT – FIRST ROUND ORDER|
- Detroit Pistons
- Houston Rockets
- Cleveland Cavs
- Toronto Raptors
- Orlando Magic
- Oklahoma City Thunder
- Golden State (from Minnesota)
- Orlando (from Chicago)
- Sacramento Kings
- New Orleans Pelicans
- Charlotte Hornets
- San Antonio Spurs
- Indiana Pacers
- Golden State Warriors
- Washington Wizards
- OKC Thunder (from Boston)
- Memphis Grizzlies
- OKC Thunder (from Miami via LAC, PHI, PHX)
- New York Knicks
- Atlanta Hawks
- New York Knicks (from Dallas)
- LA Lakers
- Houston Rockets (from Portland)
- Houston Rockets (from Milwaukee)
- LA Clippers
- Denver Nuggets
- Brooklyn Nets
- Philadelphia 76ers
- Phoenix Suns
- Utah Jazz
The Rockets have a pair of late first-round picks that they can package with the second-overall pick. The Rockets acquired the #23 pick in the draft from the Portland Trail Blazers and received the #24 pick from the Milwaukee Bucks.
Rockets Reboot, Cade Splash Brother?
The Rockets want to reboot their franchise with Cunningham in mind. General manager Raf Stone is eager to wheel and deal their hoard of picks.
Stone already offered the Indiana Pacers one of their late-first round picks plus Eric Gordon in exchange for the #13 pick. Once the Rockets secure the #13 pick, the Rockets will trade #2 and #13 plus a future first-rounder to the Pistons for the #1 pick.
Sounds like a hefty price, but Cunningham could start right away and make an impact for a team that lost 20 games in a row last year.
The Golden State Warriors would package James Wiseman, the #2 pick from last year’s draft, plus a pair of first-round picks to Detroit for the #1 pick. Adding Cunningham to a lineup with Steph Curry and Klay Thompson would created a three-headed monster. The Warriors are also linked with Damian Lillard in trade rumors and could offer a similar deal to acquire Dame.
OKC and Cleveland Love CC
Other teams are also interested in working out a trade with the Pistons for the #1 pick, but nothing concrete as the draft rapidly approaches. The Cleveland Cavs are still trying to pick up the pieces after LeBron James bolted for the LA Lakers three seasons ago. The Cavs have the #3 pick in the draft, but if they’re that desperate for Cunningham, they could trade Darius Garland and the third pick in exchange for #1.
The Oklahoma City Thunder also have a trio of first rounders, including #6 and a couple of mid-round picks at #16 and #18. The Thunder would love to keep Cunningham in the state of Oklahoma.
OKC could also package all three of their picks for Detroit’s #1 pick. The #6 is not as enticing as Houston’s #2 pick, but the mid-round picks have a lot more value than Houston’s back-to-back picks in the back end of the first round.
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