Rockets trade Dalembert to Bucks, move up two spots in draft
Houston traded Sam Dalembert and the 14th pick to Milwaukee for the 12th pick
In moving up, stockpiling picks, Houston is eyeing a possible Dwight Howard deal
The Rockets agreed to trade center Samuel Dalembert and the No. 14 pick to the Bucks for the No. 12 pick and three players, league sources confirmed.
Houston also will receive forwards Jon Brockman and Jon Leuer and point guard Shaun Livingston to complete its second trade in two days. On Tuesday, the Rockets dealt small forward Chase Budinger to the Timberwolves for the 18th pick. The Rockets now own the 12th, 16th and 18th picks in Thursday's draft -- and they're not done yet.
Sources said the Rockets have been attempting to get into the top 10 as a possible means to accomplishing their ultimate goal of acquiring Magic center Dwight Howard. Landing a coveted prospect such as UConn center Andre Drummond could help that cause because he could be flipped to Orlando as part of a possible Howard deal.
Yet just as there were indications on Wednesday afternoon that the Kings were resisting the Rockets' overtures for the No. 5 pick, there was yet another name added to that mix of prospects who could be used in a possible deal for Howard or perhaps another star. Sources say Baylor forward Perry Jones made a surprise second visit to Houston on Wednesday at the Rockets' request. While Jones is known to be on the Rockets' radar, sources say Orlando -- which picks at No. 19 when Jones is likely to be gone -- is high on him as well.
Sacramento is among the many teams Houston has been talking to about trading picks, and the Kings -- who have had talks with Golden State about moving back to No. 7 -- have shown some interest in acquiring a big man later in the draft rather than take whichever player falls to them at No. 5. The Rockets have had discussions with top 10 teams involving their leading scorer, shooting guard Kevin Martin, who has one year and $12.9 million left on his contract. Houston also has a quality point guard in Kyle Lowry, who expressed dissatisfaction with coach Kevin McHale last month.
Dalembert averaged 7.5 points, 7.0 rebounds and 1.7 blocks last season. Only $1.5 million of the 31-year-old's Dalembert's $6.7 million contract for next season is guaranteed, but a source familiar with the Bucks' thinking said Milwaukee plans to keep him to help replace the departed Andrew Bogut.
Yahoo! Sports first reported the Rockets-Bucks trade.