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Omer Asik could return to Rockets in a week… just in time for the trade deadline

Feb 5, 2014, 4:25 PM EDT

Omer Asik Getty Images

I’m sure this is all just a coincidence.

The fact that the Rockets were playing Omer Asik back when GM Daryl Morey set up a false trade deadline to try and generate offers, and then when that didn’t work he had a somewhat mysterious knee injury. Now that the league-mandated “real” trade deadline is approaching, look who is nearly healthy and ready to return — it’s our old friend Mr. Asik.

What a happy coincidence that is.

Asik went through shootaround with the Rockets on Wednesday and is working out with the team again. It appears he will be cleared to play in the next week or so, just prior to the Feb. 20 trade deadline, reports Adam Wexler of

Rockets center Omer Asik took part in Wednesday’s shoot-around, but very little heavy basketball work is done by any of the players during the glorified walk-throughs….

“He looked fine to me, he’s moving around, he’s going through 5-on-0, no contact,” Chandler Parsons said on Wednesday. “He seems to be getting better. He can be one of the better centers in this league. To have that luxury of having him and Dwight, his size and length and everything that he can bring to this team can benefit us a lot.”

The hope is still for Asik to get some playing time before the NBA breaks for the All-Star game.

The Rockets would love to move Asik at the deadline but the fact he is owed $15 million next season (but only $8.7 against the cap) has shrunk the market for his services. Daryl Morey hasn’t been able to get an offer he has liked, and if he doesn’t at the trade deadline he will wait to try again this summer.

Announcement: Pro Basketball Talk’s partner FanDuel is hosting a one-day $120,000 Fantasy Basketball league for Wednesday night’s games. It’s $25 to join and first prize is $13,000. Starts at 7pm ET on Wednesday. Here’s the FanDuel link.

In theory Asik could provide a boost to the Rockets, being the first big off the bench and spelling Dwight Howard. However, Asik really wants to start somewhere and seemed to earn that status with his play last season. We’ll have to see how this plays out, and what coincidences lie ahead.

  1. thekingdave - Feb 5, 2014 at 5:00 PM

    I think we’re hanging onto Asik this season for the simple fact there aren’t many viable suitors in the Eastern Conference with all the tankers. Next years a different story though, his expiring deal will have value and the much anticipated 2014 draft will have passed. People can try to jump Morey all they want, but having Asik on the roster this seasons pretty moot, this team isn’t ready to compete for a title yet. Oh and Kurt, could you spot me $25 for the one day FanDuel contest? I figure it’s the least you could do after I’ve read that little blurb about 3,000 times.

  2. spursareold - Feb 5, 2014 at 5:19 PM

    It doesn’t matter what his cap figure for next year is. His actual owed salary is $15M.


    Morey is reaping what he sowed when he stole Asik from Chicago with a back loaded deal. That “back load” is coming due, and he can’t find a suc…er….taker.

    • money2long - Feb 5, 2014 at 6:25 PM

      I said it once and I’ll say it again. Morey has been tryin to dupe ppl. All along he’s wanted to trade asik and the only way to milk all the assets he could was to show he would pull out of deals. The early deadline was a ploy. All to show other teams he’s capable of taking deals off the table. He wants to trade him and now he is hoping that first deadline will amp up other owner’s offers.

  3. antianarxi - Feb 5, 2014 at 5:29 PM

    Morey thought he could trick Ainge and offload Asik to the celtics, boy was he wrong! good luck trading him! i dont see any team wanting him with that albatros contract unless they sweeten it with a pick.

    • money2long - Feb 5, 2014 at 10:32 PM

      so then you CAN see a team taking him….

      • spursareold - Feb 6, 2014 at 10:44 AM

        Failure to understand the word “unless”.

  4. 1forest1 - Feb 5, 2014 at 5:51 PM

    I love what Morey has done with the rockets, but hate that he didn’t move asik when he had a chance. I’m surprised they even tried to play Dwight and Asik at the same time. Anyone should have been able to see that two defensive centers wouldn’t have worked out.
    He’s a quality center, but now he’s just sitting on the bench getting paid millions, oh wait he doesn’t even sit on the bench, that would require him to actually show up to the games.

  5. money2long - Feb 5, 2014 at 6:26 PM

    This bullshid comment section still blocking shît

  6. scottychicago - Feb 5, 2014 at 6:30 PM

    15 million dollar expiring contract next year. lots of teams would want that, but will Houston take back contracts? they might be better off letting him walk and upgrading through free agency in ’15.

    • therealhtj - Feb 5, 2014 at 9:30 PM

      With what cap space?

    • sumkat - Feb 5, 2014 at 11:03 PM

      It’s an 8.7 million expiring contract (that’s what he counts against he cap). It’s just you have to pay him 15 million

      8.7 mil is no small amount of space, but there are other guys out there with similar contracts cap wise, that you would not have to pay 6.3 million extra for the expiring deal (or a guy out there with a 15 million cap hit expiring).

      If it’s just for savings, his value is limited because actual cost is almost twice the savings (basically putting the luxury tax on yourself). There are too many teams tanking for them to get much at the deadline, I think they are stuck with him for this y ear. You MAY be able to move him in the off-season, but the return will be minimal. He needs to be resigned, and can walk from any team that trades for him if he doesn’t get the deal he wants

  7. pbtunpaidwriter - Feb 5, 2014 at 7:29 PM

    He’s really injured? I thought he was just being a huge bich/diva.

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