The Detroit Pistons recently won the NBA Draft lottery, meaning that they’re entitled to the first-overall pick. And, according to most experts, Cade Cunningham of the Oklahoma State University should be a no-brainer pick at that spot.
Nonetheless, it seems like – given the current status of their roster – the Pistons wouldn’t mind trading down one or two spots to get a player that better fits their players, as they’re not 100% sold on Cunningham.
The Houston Rockets, on the other hand, are pretty much in love with Cunningham’s game and everything he brings to the table. That’s why Pistons insider James L. Edwards III and Kelly Iko of The Athletic discussed a potential trade that could give the Rockets a chance to land Cade.
NBA Draft: Rockets Want First Pick And Cade Cunningham
According to the report, the Rockets could send them the 2nd and 23rd in this year’s draft, give them their 2022 first-round pick back, and add their 2023 first-round pick as well. All in return for this year’s first selection.
“This all comes down to how general manager Troy Weaver and Rocket GM Rafael Stone view Cade Cunningham versus the field. If Cade is several steps ahead of the likes of Green or Mobley, there’s no way Weaver trades the pick. If he views them comparable or close in projections, then I could see a deal done to add assets and still get a really good prospect. Of course, the same logic can be applied to Stone. Does he think highly enough of Cade to give up all those assets just to move up a spot?” said Edwards.
“For starters, let’s just reiterate that as much as the Rockets like Green, they love Cunningham. There’s no question how badly Houston wanted deputy commissioner Mark Tatum to flip their team card last during the lottery show a few weeks ago. Drafting Cunningham allows Silas to keep his Wall-Porter backcourt together and add a savvy, sizable wing playmaker,” the report added.
Cunningham has drawn comparisons to Grant Hill given his combination of size and versatility. He can do everything on both ends of the floor and looks like one of the most well-round prospects we’ve seen in years. But, should the Rockets strike out on this deal, they’re expected to get Evan Mobley out of the University of Southern Carolina, who also has superstar potential.