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Rockets Seeking To Exchange 2024 Lottery Pick For Future Assets

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The Houston Rockets have embarked on a new phase in their rebuilding journey, despite making nine first-round picks over the past three NBA Drafts. This shift is evident in their recent acquisitions of Fred VanVleet and Dillon Brooks in free agency, along with the appointment of Ime Udoka as head coach, signaling their ambition to transition into a winning team.

As part of this strategic shift, the Rockets are exploring the possibility of trading their 2024 draft pick, currently ninth heading into Sunday’s NBA Draft Lottery, which they acquired from Brooklyn in the Harden trade. Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle reports on the Rockets’ intention to leverage this pick to secure future assets.

Their aim is to engage with teams seeking immediate picks and are willing to exchange them for selections in the 2025 and subsequent drafts. Feigen notes that discussions on this matter have been ongoing, including conversations with Brooklyn around the NBA trade deadline in February, where Houston aimed to return some or all of the Nets’ picks in exchange for the draft assets controlled by the Phoenix Suns. However, Brooklyn did not express interest in this proposition.

Nevertheless, executing this trade may prove challenging. The 2024 draft class is perceived as relatively weak, lacking standout prospects at the top, unlike the projected strength of the 2025 and 2026 drafts. Convincing teams to relinquish future picks to improve their position in the 2024 draft poses a significant hurdle.

Should the Rockets secure a favorable outcome in the draft lottery on Sunday, potentially landing in the top four, their bargaining position could be enhanced. Regardless of the lottery results, anticipation of trade rumors involving the Rockets is expected to intensify in the lead-up to the NBA Draft in June, as they strive to advance from their 41-41, 11th-place finish in a highly competitive Western Conference.

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