Report: Houston Rockets Interested In Trading For Iman Shumpert

The Houston Rockets are looking to trade for Cleveland Cavaliers wing Iman Shumpert. How would he fit in with the team, and what would it cost to get him?

The Houston Rockets have been busy in the trade market leading up to Thursday afternoon’s deadline. On Tuesday night, they shipped forward Corey Brewer and a 2017 first round pick to the Los Angeles Lakers for guard Lou Williams.

But it seems they aren’t quite done making moves and bolstering their roster for a playoff run.

On Wednesday, ESPN’s Marc Stein reported that the Rockets were interested in Cleveland Cavaliers wing Iman Shumpert.

Shumpert fits in Houston in multiple ways. For one, he fits in financially. The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted almost 30 minutes prior that Houston was on the lookout for players in a specific salary range.

Players such as Wilson Chandler and Jared Dudley have been suggested by insiders around the league, but Shumpert’s money also fits the bill.

Iman Shumpert is making $9.7 million this season. He’s set to make $10.3 million next year and $11 million in 2018-19.

Shumpert also fits with the Houston Rockets schematically. The Rockets are a team that greatly values outside shooting. The team is first in three-point shots made (14.5) and attempted (39.8) per game.

However, their efficiency could be tightened up a bit. The team is shooting 36.4 percent from outside, good for 11th in the league.

The Rockets could also use some help on defense. The team gives up the fourth-most points per game (108.0) and the ninth-highest field goal percentage (46.1 percent) in the league.

Tuesday’s trade seemed to focus on the shooting. The Brewer-Williams deal sent away a forward that was shooting 23.4 percent from three on the year. Houston brought back a guard that is 38.6 percent from outside this season.

While that’s great for Houston’s lethal perimeter offense, Williams’ defense leaves a lot to be desired. He only accumulated 0.7 defensive win shares in 58 games this season. Williams also carries a -3.1 defensive box plus-minus.

But a deal for Shumpert would address both problems. In addition to shooting 40.3 percent from outside on the season, he also has picked up 1.1 defensive win shares in 51 games. Shumpert also has a +0.5 defensive box plus-minus this season, and had a +1.9 in 2015-16.

This would be an improvement from what Corey Brewer was providing in both facets. In addition to the bad shooting, Brewer had only +0.9 defensive win shares in 58 games and a DBPM of +0.1 this year.

But the key to a Shumpert trade is what Houston will give Cleveland in return. Marc Stein tweeted shortly after his initial report that the Cavaliers were interested in receiving Rockets point guard Patrick Beverley.

The Cavaliers have been searching for a true point guard for a while. Despite being first in the Eastern Conference at 39-16, the Cavs feel they don’t have enough point guard depth to make their push to defense their championship.

Their current depth at the position includes All-Star Kyrie Irving, but is followed by prospects DeAndre Liggins and Kay Felder. It wouldn’t hurt to have a more established point coming off of the bench.

But according to ESPN’s Calvin Watkins, Beverley may be a player that Houston is not willing to give up.

Shumpert helps Houston immensely with his shooting and perimeter defense. He would be a dangerous player off of the bench during a run in the Western Conference playoffs. But what will general manager Daryl Morey and the Rockets be willing to give up in return for such a player?

We’ll see in the remaining hours of the trade deadline: can the Rockets and Cavaliers work out a deal, or will Houston look elsewhere for help on the wing?

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