Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey, who recently traded for point guard Chris Paul, may have another point guard come to his team.
“I actually do think (Llull)’s gonna play for us. It may be on the back end, but he’s maybe one of the best guards ever in Europe … If he came in now, he’d be at least a quality rotation player in the NBA if not better.”
He was the Euroleague MVP in 2017 and has played for Real Madrid since 2007. Current teammates include former NBA players Anthony Randolph and Rudy Fernandez.
The Rockets bought his draft rights in 2009. Two years ago, Houston was rumored to offer between $15 million and $18 million over three years for his services.
Llull then signed a contract to play for Real Madrid for six more seasons and called it the best decision he had ever made. He spoke about the deal and its implications on his NBA future (via Marca.com):
“I re-signed last year for another six seasons, and you do that to stay [in Madrid], you don’t do that to stay one year and then leave the next one. I’ve said many times that I’m very happy here.”
If he finished his contract, which he has said he plans to do, he would play in Spain until 2021.
In order for him to leave, his new buyout option was speculated to be worth $13.4 million (on top of his NBA contract) if the Rockets were to sign him. But ESPN indicates it may actually be a more “manageable” figure.
The 29-year-old point guard would be a great addition to Houston due to his natural ability to drive to the lane and shoot from long distance.