The Houston Rockets have come to terms with the fact that the only way they will trade Omer Asik is if they include Jeremy Lin in the deal. The Los Angeles Lakers are so desperate for a point guard right now that they signed Kendall Marshall and made inquiries about Iman Shumpert. It stands to reason that, at the very least, these two teams would consider seeing if there was a deal to be made.
Early this weekend, rumors began to circulate online that the Lakers and Rockets might want to do a swap centering around Lin and Asik. What exactly Houston would get out of this deal is unclear, and given how Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol played together last year, it’s questionable if Daryl Morey would really want to repeat that little experiment. Beyond Gasol, the Lakers have nothing that the Rockets would want, so it’s difficult to envision any sort of deal happening.
Gasol’s salary is big enough to cover both Lin and Asik, so from a financial standpoint this sort of deal wouldn’t be a problem. It just clearly doesn’t make either team better. The Lakers would lose offensive production if they swapped Gasol-for-Asik, and Mike D’Antoni has zero use for big men who can’t score effectively. Lin would be a welcome addition, but he probably wouldn’t be enough of a difference-maker to push this trade forward. Besides, L.A. is currently in cost-cutting mode, and whether Lin’s contract justifies his production is still debatable.
It’s clear why this rumor picked up steam this weekend, given the circumstances. Houston’s potential deals for Asik fell apart late last week. The Lakers lost Kobe Bryant for six more weeks and have no one to play point guard. Desperate times call for desperate measures. That said, these aren’t the desperate measures that are going to be taken.