NBA Trade: Rockets Land Courtney Lee, Send Trevor Ariza To Hornets

Sam McIntoshCorrespondent IAugust 11, 2010

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - FEBRUARY 23:  Courtney Lee #6 of the New Jersey Nets controls the ball against the Portland Trail Blazers at the Izod Center on February 23, 2010 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.The Blazers defeated the Nets 102-93.NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Pending NBA approval, the Houston Rockets will send Trevor Ariza to the New Orleans Hornets as part of a 4-team deal that will land Courtney Lee in the Bayou City. 

Just when Rockets fans seemed certain a final and competitive team was in place, Daryl Morey and the Houston front office make this bold move. 

Lee, like Ariza, is a young player with an already decent reputation. Lee had a fantastic post-season with Orlando two seasons ago when he met Trevor Ariza and the LA Lakers in the NBA Finals. 

Although Lee will help improve a below average perimeter shooting core, he lacks the intense hand-in-your-face defense that Ariza brought to the table. 

With Kevin Martin starting at the 2-guard, Lee will come off the bench as one of the better offensive 6-men to help create one of the best second units in the NBA. However, with Ariza gone, the Rockets really lack any All-Star caliber defenders other than Shane Battier. 

That isn't to say Trevor Ariza is of All-Star caliber, but I certainly think it is in his future. 

At the end of the day, the trade must make sense to Daryl Morey. Obviously he has a plan in place to not only bring Houston success this season, but make the Rockets competitive for years to come. 

Ariza and Lee are virtually the same age, they have many of the same experiences. With that alone, the trade seems okay, especially if it clears up more cap room for the future. 

But why trade a defensive minded small forward for an offensive minded shooting guard on a team that already has Kevin Martin (perhaps the most offensive minded SG in the game)?

Lets open up the floor for comments. What do you think Rockets fans?