NBA Rumors: Derrick Favors Traded to Rockets in Multiplayer Deal with Thunder

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IISeptember 30, 2022

Oklahoma City Thunder's Derrick Favors looks on during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Philadelphia 76ers, Friday, Feb. 11, 2022, in Philadelphia. The 76ers won 100-87. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)
AP Photo/Chris Szagola

The Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets have agreed to an eight-player trade that notably includes 12-year NBA veteran forward Derrick Favors.

ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski provided the details.

Adrian Wojnarowski @wojespn

ESPN Sources: The Oklahoma City Thunder are trading Derrick Favors, Ty Jerome, Moe Harkless, Theo Maledon and a 2025 second-round pick via Atlanta to the Houston Rockets for David Nwaba, Sterling Brown, Trey Burke and Marquese Chriss.

Wojnarowski also added some context regarding why the deal went down.

"Cap-centric deal for both teams: Thunder gain two trade exceptions and drop about $10M under luxury tax," Wojnarowski wrote.

"Rockets get a second-round pick for taking on $1M in salary. Favors will have value as a backup center, or elsewhere on a trade in marketplace too."

Favors, the No. 3 overall pick in the 2010 NBA draft, averaged 5.3 points and 4.7 rebounds in 16.7 minutes over 39 games (18 starts) for the Thunder last year.

The Thunder and Rockets are both in similar spots. They were Western Conference contenders for much of the 2010s but have since gone into multiyear rebuilding modes. Both teams have players to build around and a boatload of future draft picks to work with as well.

On the Thunder side, the trio of Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Josh Giddey and Chet Holmgren (who is out this year with a Lisfranc injury) lead the future. For the Rockets, Jalen Green, Jabari Smith Jr., Kevin Porter Jr. and others provide hope for the team.

Outside the core, there is some expected roster churn. Both teams had a lot of players suit up for them last year, with the Thunder totaling 26 and the Rockets totaling 19.

The eight-player trade ultimately is a cap-based move that probably doesn't foreshadow any seismic moves for the team's future. At the very least, though, some players featured in the trade could end up in the back end of rotations.

Of note, Favors could find a home in the Houston frontcourt off the bench. Or the Rockets could simply buy him out of his contract (one year, $10.2 million), allowing Favors to find a contending team at this stage of his career.

For now, the Thunder and Rockets are gearing up for the beginning of the season. OKC opens on the road Oct. 19 versus the Minnesota Timberwolves. Houston visits the Atlanta Hawks on the same day.