The Rockets are making bold and blatant moves to pursue Dwight Howard after trading Chase Budinger to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for yet another first round pick. There's the slight possibility the Rockets want to package the picks to trade up further into the lottery, but Howard is the clear preference over anyone in this draft. Reports suggest Houston is serious about going after Howard.
NBA writer Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted this after the Budinger trade:
Houston will keep working to flip those picks (14, 16 and 18) as part of package for Howard, or perhaps an impact player high in lottery.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) June 26, 2012
What these moves do for the Rockets' benefit is provide Orlando with the idea of rebuilding through this particular draft, or at least through the assets of those draft picks in exchange for Dwight Howard. The thing about it for the Rockets is that they have absolutely nothing to lose, and no player on their roster is untradeable.
Read more about the Rockets at The Dream Shake and SB Nation Houston.