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Omer Asik Trade Watch: Bass, Lee And A Pick?

 

So things have changed, once again, since the last time we updated you the Asik…sweepstakes? Scratch tickets, at the very least.

Adrian Wojnarowski is reporting that the Celtics and Rockets are both considering a deal that would send Asik to Boston in exchange for Brandon Bass, Courtney Lee and a first round pick. Don’t panic: There’s no way the Celtics would send their 2014 pick unprotected, but they may include it as added incentive for the disgruntled Houston big man.

From Woj’s Twitter:

The Boston Celtics are gaining traction in talks to acquire Houston center Omer Asik, league sources tell Yahoo Sports.

Serious talks on Boston-Houston package for Asik have included Brandon Bass, Courtney Lee and a 1st round pick, sources tell Yahoo.

If such a package were to come together, it is unclear if Lee would go to Rockets or be routed to a third team.

More after the jump.Steve Bulpett’s sources added a caveat.

Sources continue to insist Celtics are open to discussion (particularly on Asik), but are sitting tight, not pursuing anything.

This would be quite the haul for the Celtics, especially if we assume there’s no way they would give away their pick unprotected. Bass has been playing admirably (and, frankly, he deserves to be playing for a contender right now), but his role on the team has always been questionable given the logjam at power forward. Houston would be getting a very capable individual defender who could stretch the floor to 18 feet around Dwight Howard as well as the first round pick they’ve been demanding.

Meanwhile, Brad Stevens gets the rim protector his defense has desperately needed — a big capable of blowing up pick-and-rolls as well as stopping opposing players around the basket. Pairing Asik with Sullinger, who is becoming increasingly stretchy on offense as the season has progressed, would allow the Celtics to space the floor nicely on offense. Asik does the bare minimum offensively, and often not even that, but the assumption would be that Sully and Jeff Green would pick up his slack.

Whichever pick would be involved, Boston still has a ton of picks over the next four years (shouts to Billy King!), and if the proposed Asik experiment didn’t work and the Celtics missed the playoffs, they will still likely retain their own pick this year.

The biggest questions will be from people who believe the Celtics should be losing early and often this season, and it’s a valid point. Asik is likely to make this team inconveniently better for people who are salivating over Wiggins and Parker. But the Celtics aren’t likely to catch the Jazz or the Sixers anyway — both have done a much better job of losing games so far this season. A trade like this would fill a gaping roster hole and give the team a chance to compete for the playoffs.

Rondo-Bradley-Green-Sullinger-Asik might be a playoff team, but they wouldn’t be a contender — other moves, perhaps several of them, would have to be made. But Ainge has a ton of assets, cap room in the offseason and experience in building a championship team. All in all, as presented, this seems like a good value for Boston.

Follow Tom on Twitter: @Tom_NBA.

  • The Cardinal

    Giving up Bass, Lee and a first rounder for Asik would be the best possible deal from the perspective of the players that we should be willing to give up, so it probably won't happen (but I'd be thrilled if it did).

    • hax

      As long as it is that 2015 clippers pick, I'm alright with the deal personally. I just don't think that'll be enough to win the 'sweepstakes'. If it is then yayyyy. I'd highly expect Danny to be calling for a all-star SG/SF then and dnagling those other picks around to create an instant contender. (Assuming rondo comes back playing great)

  • Mark

    I'm fine with giving up Bass and Lee. It's adding a pick that I'm struggling with.

  • JStokes1313

    Random thought, doesn't pertain to anything here in the slightest: How hilarious would it be if Wiggins, Randle and Parker all decided to troll the NBA in June and returned to school for another year? Utah might collapse in on itself.

    • dslack

      Or Utah could get the #4 pick. Chances are 36%, which are higher than the chances that they get picks 1, 2, or 3 (assuming they have the worst record).

    • Mark

      People around Parker have said the chances of him staying another year is strong.

  • YouSerious?

    This is literally the best deal you could hope for. A real center for two guys who weren't in the long term goals? Sign me up. Also, if we trade our pick, that would mean they wouldn't be going out to tank, right? This sounds sweet all around to me since we'll have a pick anyway (Yes, I know it'll probably be low, but oh well!).

    A top tier rebounder and defender at a great value, plus we get Lee's contract off our hands.

  • Vincent

    Any thoughts to getting Asik to agree to a longer term deal before finalizing the trade? I think his contract expires at the end of next season. Or maybe they'll be thrilled to get Bass and Lee off the books that they don't mind the danger of a rent-an-Asik for 1.5 seasons.

    • Mark

      It's possible that Asik is an asset for another trade. Possibly a draft day trade to move up the board. I don't see Asik being here longterm.

    • dslack

      Bass's contract expires when Asik's does. If the Celtics lose Asik, then, from the perspective of the longterm growth of the team, this deal just gets rid of Lee's final year of his contract at the expense of a 1st round draft pick. That's a bad swap, unless the cap space would be well used. In other words, I think Danny doesn't make this deal if he plans to let Asik walk.

  • hax

    If this trade did happen, check out how sweet & depthful(not a real word, is it?) team this is.
    Asik-Faverani-Humphries
    Sullinger-Olynyk-Humphries
    Green-Wallace-Bogans
    Bradley-Crawford-Brooks-Bogans
    Rondo-Crawford-Pressey

    And if nothing but Asik comes back, we'd have room for a free agent to add more depth.

    • Mark

      They won't go over the tax threshold so its doubtful they'll sign a useful FA.

  • ghoulbuns

    That team kind of sucks

    • YouSerious?

      So if you took the current Celtics, and added an All-Star point guard (Rondo), plus a REAL center who's top 5 in rebounding and defense (Asik)….that's a bad team? Really?

  • Ray Leighton

    From what I understand, the structure of Asik's current deal makes it impossible by league rules to give him an extension. He absolutely will be a unrestricted free-agent once his deal ends, and there isn't anything that either the Rockets or the Cs can do about it. So we really could be talking about a rental.

    I think that the big problem with all of these deals is that (a) Houston overvalues Asik, and (b) Houston is acting like they have an advantage in trade negotiations. They cannot realistically be expecting Bass, Lee, and a first. Asik is a terrific defender and one of the best rebounders in the league — in fact, his advanced numbers tend to be slightly better than Dwight's for some of these categories — but he can't shoot from beyond five feet and he is an absolutely terrible free-throw shooter, which means that you have to worry about putting him on the floor at the end of close games. I like Asik a lot and I think that he would be a great fit for the Cs, but he is not worth Bass, Lee, and a first. And just because Houston has set itself a deadline to make the trade doesn't mean that the rest of the league has to play along. Houston has a disgruntled player to whom they are paying good money — they have to be a lot more desperate to find a trade partner than we are. Danny should play hard-ball on this one. I'd start by offering Hump and a first and see if the Rockets would be attracted by Hump's expiring contract and an unprotected Nets first. Not to mention that we may want to keep some assets for the Kevin Love sweepstakes if Minnesota goes down the tubes before the all-star break. ;) We don't need to be in any hurry, and despite all of the talk, there may not be as many buyers for Asik as Houston would like.

    • hax

      Current rumors say the talks have heated up and the Celtics are infront to grab Asik, with the haggling being whixh pick they give up.

  • skeeds

    Ok if I'm the Rockets, I swap a (very solid) center that I have no use for, for a 3+D guard and a stretch-4 vet that both are playing well. Added bonus, my perennial All-Star diva franchise player knows both of them, they 100% fit his style and have had success with him in the past. I add no contract burdens, plus I get a pick for my troubles.
    Yup. If I'm the Rockets I'm doing that deal.
    Obviously for the Celtics this makes even more sense, even if this doesn't fit in long term vision. Lee is expendable (minutes-wise) and flipping Bass for Asik makes a lot of sense for a team that currently has 5 power forwards and 1 rookie center. Not re-signing him after next year is the situation we'd be in with Bass anyway. And Asik is definitely a more valuable player.

  • JStokes1313

    Gotta say, tonight's game is making me feel like grabbing Asik wouldn't be such a bad idea…

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