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Rockets agree to 3-year, $25.1 million deal with Omer Asik

Jul 2, 2012, 3:30 AM EDT

Omer Asik

The Rockets have been looking for a center to hang their hat on since Yao Ming retired. On Sunday, they came to terms with a player they hope will at least do the job for a little bit.

Multiple sources, including Yahoo Sports report that Houston has come to an agreement with restricted free agent center for the Bulls, Omer Asik on a three-year, $25.1 million deal.

Asik is the perfect free agent for fans and pundits to debate. Low-minutes, high production, defensive-minded, big man in a smallball world free agent center who a contender (the Bulls) hold the rights to match to. Maybe most interesting is that Asik falls under the Arenas rule for contracts. So if the Bulls match, it’s under a $5 million – $5 million-$15 million distribution over three years. If they don’t, the Rockets get him for just over $8 million a year.

It’s easy to claim that Asik is overpaid, due to his low points production. He’s not a scorer. He plays limited minutes, and can pick up fouls and lose energy quickly. But he’s also one of the best defensive centers in the league if you look at him from an advanced metrics standpoint. No surprise that would interest Daryl Morey. Asik was in the 96th percentile in points allowed per possession this season, and in the 77th percentile in the post, playing heavy minutes. He’s a legit seven-footer who rotates well.

But was it Thibdoeau’s system in Chicago that enabled him to play that well defensively, or his own talents? The answer is a bit of both. But there’s no reason that with the right system, he can’t duplicate that production in Houston. And while the league has shifted towards a smallball approach, having a legit big man is still a huge advantage.

For the Bulls, the pricetag may be too steep. Even if they were to amnesty Carlos Boozer, in 2015 the Bulls would be on the books for a huge amount of money. They may have to let Asik head out to have room for other decisions.

Whether you consider Asik to be overpaid or a value deal, the Rockets have a center. Which would make you think that it’s possible they may be heading away from the plan to acquire Dwight Howard. For now, the Rockets continue to stockpile quality players and prompting discussion.

  1. spellingcopfather - Jul 2, 2012 at 3:58 AM

    Bulls may let this guy walk just off the fact of what happien in game 6 vs the Sixers!!!

    • 91devinhester23 - Jul 2, 2012 at 9:44 AM

      asik played his heart out that game and was absolutely GASSED at the end. No way he should have been in, and no way should CJ have passed it to him. Try not to make comments if you have no idea what’s going on.

      • spellingcopfather - Jul 3, 2012 at 10:33 PM

        So Houston is happy to have a big that will be (GASSED) by the 4th???

  2. 69jaredallen69 - Jul 2, 2012 at 4:13 AM

    Damn I wish my mom had fooled around with a tall man when I was being conceived!

  3. mcjon22 - Jul 2, 2012 at 6:01 AM

    “I must break you”

    Omer Asik, directed at Houston’s salary cap

  4. hartdaddy - Jul 2, 2012 at 6:03 AM

    Rockets went for a poison pill offer for Chicago & got stuck with Asik, this is why these teams will never get anywhere as a franchise, stupid impulse buys during free agency that put teams in bad contract situations down the road.

  5. labratre - Jul 2, 2012 at 6:26 AM

    WOOOOOOOOOOW!!!!!

  6. labratre - Jul 2, 2012 at 6:27 AM

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOW!!!!!!!!

  7. bparmalee - Jul 2, 2012 at 6:48 AM

    It’s not a bad deal. I don’t really like Asik but structuring the contract this way will give them a nice trading chip in his last year. There will be teams looking to get rid of good players because of the tax so a guy making 15 million in his last year has value.

  8. ccshocktalk - Jul 2, 2012 at 8:22 AM

    $25,000,000.00 reasons not to re-sign him in Chicago. I like Asik and all but I don’t like him that much.

  9. kacapaco - Jul 2, 2012 at 8:31 AM

    $8 mil/yr fir this kid? Are you kidding me? Just cos he is 7 footer doesn’t mean he is legit. Rockies sucked here & wont take them long to see that. He got double of his real value.

  10. reesesteel23 - Jul 2, 2012 at 9:36 AM

    dayum!…bulls fans would you really want to match that?

  11. niubears - Jul 2, 2012 at 11:39 AM

    Wonder if he’ll learn how to catch a ball in the offseason? Ummm…. probably not.

  12. iowahbr - Jul 4, 2012 at 4:06 PM

    Please let rock hands go. Even for short minutes a team like the Bulls can’t use him in tight games because he can’t catch the ball without bringing it down and sometimes you lose when all 5 players on the court aren’t at least small scoring threats.

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