The Houston Rockets have a fairly stacked front court after signing free agent centers in consecutive years. This offseason, they managed to land Dwight Howard, who was the most coveted player on the market. The year before, they signed Omer Asik to a three-year deal.
Asik was said to be upset after the team acquired Howard and reportedly wanted to be traded. He is still with Houston, and it looks like the team will try to make the most of having both players.
Rockets GM Daryl Morey conducted an “ask me anything” session on Reddit Friday and explained Asik’s role on the team.
“Omer would prefer to be a starter and is certainly a starter+ quality player. That said, he is a winner first & likes being on a winning team,” Morey said in response to someone who asked about Asik and Howard sharing the center position.
Morey was also asked if Asik could see minutes as a power forward, which would allow him and Howard to be on the court at the same time. Morey says they will explore that possibility, only with the positions reversed.
“Coach McHale plans to experiment with Dwight at PF and Omer as C in training camp. If it works and helps us win, obviously we would look at using it,” Morey wrote.
There is speculation that Morey saying he will play Asik and Howard together is a claim intended to boost Asik’s trade value. It certainly doesn’t seem like having Howard and Asik — both big rebounders and defensive presences who can’t shoot free throws very well — together on the court at the same time would be a great idea.
Another interesting quote came when Morey was asked about the report that Chris Paul was threatening the Clippers that he would sign with the Rockets. In response, Morey called Chris Paul the best point guard in the NBA and said it was flattering to hear the Clippers guard had interest in joining their team.