Danny Granger was traded by the Indiana Pacers to the Philadelphia 76ers right at this season’s NBA Trade Deadline. Now, it seems as though Granger is closing in on a buy-out with the Sixers as he does not want to play there (James Herbert of SBNation.com). The likely favorite for the former All-Star is the Miami Heat. Granger wants to play for a championship contender and the Heat are just that. The San Antonio Spurs and Oklahoma City Thunder are other possibilities (Mark Bruty of ThunderousIntentions.com).
One team that hasn’t been mentioned but should be looking at Granger is the Houston Rockets.
The Rockets currently have a full 15-player roster. They would likely have to part ways with Greg Smith, Isaiah Canaan, Robert Covington or Troy Daniels to make room for Granger.
If the team were to acquire Granger they would bring in another scorer off the bench. He has some ability to take pressure off of James Harden and Chandler Parsons once they are on the bench. The combination of Jeremy Lin and Granger off the bench would provide a significant relief and boost to the second unit. Granger could be an improvement over Omri Casspi and Francisco Garcia if he gains a comfort level with his teammates and gets his rhythm back.
The former All-Star would be entering a red-hot team in Houston that has won nine of its last 10 games and is one of the top teams in the Western Conference. You have to think that he would be willing to conform to coach Kevin McHale and his style of play.
Granger has been hurt the last couple of seasons and struggled to regain his form with his Pacers teammates. He played just five games last season where he averaged just 5.4 points per game. Through 29 games this season Granger averaged just 8.3 points points per game.
However, it was just in the 2011-12 season where Granger was putting up 18.7 points per game. Through 2007-12, Granger averaged 21.6 points in 350 games.
If Granger were to not workout as planned, the team could still simply add him for likely the veteran’s minimum contract without taking a massive cap hit.
The Rockets are one of the NBA’s best teams. However, they may still be one major piece away from winning a championship. This is not to say that Granger is the absolute missing part. If he does fulfill his abilities he could significantly improve the Rockets team.
Once the Sixers and Granger reach a buy-out the Rockets should be in contact with him and his agent. The decision would be a low-risk high-reward situation.