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Omer Asik won’t comment on trade demand, will ‘see how it goes’ playing with Dwight Howard

Sep 27, 2013, 10:31 PM EDT

dwight asik Getty Images

Rockets head coach Kevin McHale made it very clear earlier this week that he has no interest in Omer Asik‘s feelings about Dwight Howard now being in Houston.

“I haven’t had an opportunity to talk with him about all that, but Daryl (Morey’s) job is to try to improve the team,” McHale told the Houston Chronicle. “Omer’s job is not to wonder how that affects him. His job is to figure out how they can play together and be effective.”

Asik reportedly asked to be traded almost immediately following the Howard acquisition, fearing that there would be a duplication of responsibilities and his role there would be diminished.

The Rockets held their media day on Friday, and Asik was asked about his personally tumultuous summer. But he had no interest in rehashing it all, and seemed willing to at least give the pairing a shot.

From Sam Amick of USA Today:

The always-gracious Asik addressed his widely known unrest, offering no comment on his July trade demand that is not expected to be granted, while insisting he’ll be ready to play whatever minutes or roles come his way. After playing with the Turkish national team this summer, Asik was with teammates old and new for the first time since last season.

“You guys can ask as much as you can (about the trade demand), but I’m not going to say anything about this,” said Asik, who was cornered against a wall outside the interview room before agreeing to speak. “I think (Howard) is the best center in the league, and that’s a great addition for the Houston Rockets. So we’ll see how it goes, starting tomorrow.”

While McHale hasn’t reached out to Asik to clear the air, what he has done is talk up the possibility of playing him alongside Howard in the lineup at every opportunity — something that from a basketball standpoint would only seem viable in fairly specific situations, against only a small number of teams.

Houston wants to make it work with Asik, because two above-average defensive big men in the rotation are obviously better than one. But the tough love approach publicly from McHale seems to be in direct contrast to his plotting behind the scenes, even if Asik may not realize it just yet.

  1. kb2408 - Sep 28, 2013 at 12:09 AM

    I give McHale two more seasons before he’s fired. After year two of the Dwight “era” and having not reached the finals, Houston will be looking for a new coach.

    • rohlo - Sep 28, 2013 at 4:34 AM

      personally i think if mchale leaves it will be by his decision.he dealt with alot of personal stuff last season losing his daughter to lupas and still got htem into the playoffs and ran a different offense than he has ever coached or played.i give him credit! there will be a 3 year window to get a championship back to houston startign this year.this year will be transition with the play of harden and howard goign forward.

      • bendover09 - Sep 28, 2013 at 4:54 PM

        None of that personal crap matters when coaching a prima Dona..yes it is sad news but come on.. you guys are already making up an excuse for the guy before the season already starts? If he is not ready mentally he would not be there. McHale was a great player but a horrible coach. My Houston friends are cringing that the fact their team is ran by a numbnuts

    • thebigcaptain2011 - Sep 28, 2013 at 10:58 AM

      What exactly are you basing this on? Your assumption that things won’t work with Dwight? I bet McHale lasts longer than Dantoni in L.A. Enjoy missing the playoffs this season.

      • jpas94 - Sep 30, 2013 at 2:04 AM

        Whoa there guy, no need to diss the entire laker franchise just because of “bendover09″‘s insensitive comment. What exactly are you basing your Laker hate off of? At no point did he claim to even be a laker fan. We’ll have fun re-tooling; hope you have as much fun extending your team’s 18 year championship drought

      • thebigcaptain2011 - Oct 7, 2013 at 12:37 AM

        I heard Jerry West is doing some consulting in Golden State. Maybe he can do you guys ANOTHER solid and hand over another superstar.

  2. 00maltliquor - Sep 28, 2013 at 2:15 AM

    One word to describe when Dwight meets Omer for the first time as a teammate…Awwwkward.

  3. rohlo - Sep 28, 2013 at 4:31 AM

    people are gonna need to hit those jumpers because nothing is coming easy down low against the rockets anymore! its a win win for the rockets.if it works great ,if it doesnt get assets in trade!!

  4. chicagofan - Sep 28, 2013 at 8:19 AM

    he had better enjoy his $25m contract and STFU

  5. bhunter1995 - Sep 28, 2013 at 11:16 AM

    They should trade him. D12 works best when there is a floor spacing 4. Let Parsons run the four. They can trade Asik and get a lot of value for him. Also the free throw shooting of Asik is as bad as Howard’s if not a little worse, and the floor spacing will be atrocious with both of them on the floor. They can get a couple solid bench players that fit the system if they trade him. Asik + Howard won’t work.

  6. zoomy123 - Sep 28, 2013 at 6:39 PM

    A Dwight Howard & Omer Asik lineup will NOT work in today’s NBA. Neither Dwight nor Omer have any offense that allows them to extend more than 3 feet from the basket.

  7. cmehustle - Sep 28, 2013 at 9:27 PM

    I saw on an NBA site that maybe an eventual trade with the Pelicans could be in the works. A strait up Asik for Ryan Anderson. That just makes too much sense to not happen.

    • 00maltliquor - Sep 30, 2013 at 1:33 AM

      That would be lovely for both teams.

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