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Things start to get messier with this pick, so bear with me. The Rockets traded Chase Budinger to the Minnesota Timberwolves on Tuesday for the 18th pick in the draft, giving the Rockets the 14th, 16th, and 18th picks in the draft. The Rockets had several good players last year, but no superstar, so it seems like the Rockets will use their three picks as trade chips.
The prizes they're after? Dwight Howard and Deron Williams.
(Disclaimer: while neither of these players seem to have Houston on their wish list, Houston still seems to think they have a shot at both players, so these trades make sense.)
Which leads us to the current owners of the 5th pick, the Sacramento Kings, who had the worst defense in the league last year, lacked a veteran presence, and were near the bottom of the league in assists. The Rockets will flip the No. 16 pick and Kyle Lowry, a defensively-strong point guard with a few years under his belt, for the No. 5 pick.
The Rockets will clear more cap space and the point guard slot for Deron Williams, while picking up Andre Drummond, the best center prospect in the draft and someone the Magic can use to replace Dwight Howard.
The Kings, who don't really need more young players, pick up a veteran player to run the point and play defense while retaining the opportunity to pick up a player in a strong draft.