Linsanity will be non-existent without Dwight Howard.
The Houston Rockets rocked the NBA by stealing Jeremy Lin from the New York Knicks this offseason. While they’re guaranteed to sell tickets with Lin in town, if they actually want to contend too, they must trade for Howard.
Omer Asik is likely joining the Houston Rockets. The Chicago Bulls aren't expected to match his three-year, $25.1 million offer sheet.— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 22, 2012
Omer Asik's signing will NOT affect the role Houston Rockets playing as main faciliatator of a deal that nets Dwight Howard or Andrew Bynum.— Tony Mejia (@TonyMejiaNBA) July 22, 2012
Houston has done a solid job this offseason of surrounding Lin with young talent that can put the ball in the basket. Jeremy Lamb is a capable downtown shooter and Terrence Jones and Royce White finish well at the rim. But they still don’t possess a big man that’s a legitimate threat in the pick and roll.
Lin is a player that needs the ball in his hands to succeed. According to 82games.com, only 24 percent of his field goals were assisted last season. He’s going to create most of the Rockets offense, but in order to maximize his value—to truly unleash Linsanity—Houston needs a dominant pick-and-roll big like Lin had in NYC with Tyson Chandler and Amar'e Stoudamire.
Howard is just that.
Outside of Wilt Chamberlain himself, no center in NBA history boasts D12’s freakish athleticism. He and Lin would form an unstoppable pick-and-roll duo. Houston would instantly become a playoff contender, and who knows—maybe more than that if all of their new pieces mesh well.
But without Howard or even another respectable pick-and-roll big in the fold, they won’t sniff the postseason. Kevin Martin is the only accomplished veteran on the entire team. The Rockets have made plenty of noise this summer, but if they actually want to be heard during the regular season, they won’t stop.
David Daniels is a featured columnist at Bleacher Report and a syndicated writer.