After another playoff exit at the hands of the Golden State Warriors, the Houston Rockets — maybe because their top two stars are not playing nice with one another — are looking to overhaul their roster. An NBA source tells DBcom that starting on Tuesday, the Rockets started the process of making “for-sale” phone calls. And when one of those calls is placed to Dallas, and the subject is center Clint Capela? The Mavericks will be interested.
Wojnarowski reports that all players under contract, besides James Harden, could be moved in the right deal. That leaves players such as aging point guard Chris Paul, the star who is reportedly in conflict with Harden. And it leaves a player like Capela, who an NBA source tells DBcom the Mavs surely envision as a fine front-court partner alongside Kristaps Porzingis.
Salman Ali: Woj on Rockets (@SportsCenter): "I think (Clint) Capela is probably the most tradeable of the group... That's been the name that's been more of a topic here in recent days with the calls that Daryl Morey is generating out of Houston." pic.twitter.com/2iSosBSEjM
Mike Fisher: #Rockets either have already called #Mavs about trading for Clint Capela, or are about to. And when they do? DAL will listen ... pic.twitter.com/UlXJJmuu2d
The Rockets have been more aggressive in offering up Capela in recent days, sources said. Houston has lost in the conference final and conference semifinal to Golden State in consecutive years.
March 2, 2021 | 11:11 am EST Update
NBA Central: “I don’t think it’s any secret in the league Victor Oladipo has a desire to play in Miami. He’d like to go there in free agency. They’re going to have cap space, so that may happen.” – Brian Windhorst pic.twitter.com/QrATjw5hQl
March 2, 2021 | 9:47 am EST Update
Still, league insiders don’t believe the Celtics can stand pat, and potentially waste a year of the primes of their two young building blocks who are playing at an elite level. “There comes a time where you have to do something to keep your stars placated and show that you’re trying, especially when they’re young and early in their primes,” the East executive said. “You have to make that commitment to them.”
That’s something Ainge has been reluctant to do in the past. The last time Boston acquired a player in an in-season trade was six years ago, when the team landed Isaiah Thomas from Phoenix. Only the San Antonio Spurs have a longer drought. “They’ll only do something,” the West executive said, “if they think they’re going to bury you.”