Even though Omer Asik doesn’t look like he’s going to get the same amount of playing time he did last season for the Houston Rockets, the team has no intention of trading him, even if he’s asking for it.
According to ESPN, Asik has asked to leave the moment it was made public that Dwight Howard chose them in the free agency sweepstakes. Asik started in all 82 games last season for the Houston Rockets, averaging 30 minutes a night, more than double his time on the floor with the Chicago Bulls in 2011-2012.
As Morey and McHale said themselves, with Dwight Howard becoming available, it didn’t really matter who their starting center was; they had to make a move for him. Twin towers don’t happen that often in the NBA anymore, especially not two big men who are both paint-only kind of players, who make their offensive living very near the rim, with very little or no range at all.
And yet, despite some teams showing interest (Washington Wizards?), the Rockets don’t plan on giving up an asset like Asik, who averaging 10.1 points and 11.7 rebounds. In their minds, having the option of hardly losing a beat when Howard takes a rest in terms of rebounding, defense and paint presence is something that’s worth more than the $8.3 million Asik will make as a backup center, and they also feel they haven’t seen everything from the 27 year old just yet.
McHale, who played in what might be the greatest frontcourt in history next to Larry Bird and Robert Parish, thinks the two can co-exist, even on the court, and not just on the same team.
With Omer, he had a great year for us last year and really became one of the top centers in the league. It’s just when you have an opportunity to get Dwight, it’s hard not to. I’m sure Omer right now is a little down in the dumps, but we’ll pick him up. You do play two bigs. You have to get spacing and you have to make sure your small guys have got to make sure they keep the court spaced.