UPDATE: Friday, December 13 at 6:44 p.m. ET by Joe Flynn
The Asik-for-Varejao rumor has been shot down, according to the Akron Beacon-Journal's Jason Lloyd:
#Cavs not interested in Omer Asik, per league source. Houston will trade him, but it won't be straight up to Cleveland for Anderson Varejao— Jason Lloyd (@JasonLloydABJ) December 13, 2013
Though Cleveland could certainly use some help, they are wise to turn down this offer. The Cavs need to bolster their 28th-ranked offense, and adding a defensive specialist like Asik probably won't accomplish that.
---End of Update---
UPDATE: Friday, December 13 at 12:14 a.m. ET by Joe Flynn
It looks like the Rockets might have found some potential suitors for Asik, and are looking to trade him next week.
Per Turner Sports' David Aldridge
ICYMI: Rockets will trade Asik next Wednesday or Thursday. And do not discount Cleveland/Varejao. Would be perfect fit next to Howard.— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) December 13, 2013
The plot thickens...
---End of Update---
According to CBS Sports' Ken Burger, the disgruntled Asik is changing agents and signing with the powerful Arn Tellem. Tellem is one of the premier names among sports agents, so perhaps Asik is counting on his new agent's cachet to get him out of Houston as quickly as possible.
It's not difficult to see why Asik would want to be traded. His playing time in Houston has been on a roller-coaster ride this season.
|Rockets' Game||Asik's Minutes per Game (When He Played)||Asik's DNP||Rockets' W-L|
The Asik saga began in the summer when the Rockets signed Dwight Howard, an All-Star who just happens to play Asik's position. General manager Daryl Morey didn't originally plan to trade Asik, according to a July report from the Houston Chronicle.
Instead, Houston began the season playing Asik alongside Howard in a classic "twin towers" lineup, but the experiment quickly went awry.
Per Sports Illustrated's Ben Golliver:
In eight appearances together, the Howard/Asik combination has struggled, to say the least. Per NBA.com/stats, the pair has put up an offensive rating of 87.3 (way, way down from Houston’s overall offensive rating of 103.9) and a defensive rating of 103.1 (worse than Houston’s overall defensive rating of 100.2).
So the Rockets sat Asik...and he pouted, and pouted and pouted.
He lost playing time, then suddenly got it back. Berger reported that rival GMs considered the Rockets' asking price for Asik to be "delusional" in November, and it didn't look like Asik would be traded anytime soon.
Then, suddenly, another plot twist. Asik's playing time dropped back down to zero, and ESPN's Marc Stein reported that the Rockets are looking to trade him this month:
Hearing this strong: Rockets determined to trade Omer Asik by Dec. 19 at latest and have ramped up discussions with potential trade partners— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) December 6, 2013
Reason Dec. 19 is significant is because anyone Rockets get would be eligible to be re-packaged in new deal on trade-deadline day (Feb. 20)— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) December 6, 2013
If the end is truly near (and who really knows at this point), then both Asik and the Rockets will likely be better off shedding all of this needless drama.