The Houston Rockets are thrilled that they were able to sign Dwight Howard to a contract after he left the Los Angeles Lakers, but to do so, the team needed to trade away young star Thomas Robinson to the Portland Trail Blazers to make the money fit.
Robinson was originally traded from the Kings, where he was drafted, to the Rockets before moving to the Blazers and now the young star is with his third team after being taken number five in the NBA draft last season. His time with the Rockets was short, but he made an impression on fellow traded star James Harden, who told Pro Basketball Talk that he feels that Robinson can become a great player while in Portland.
The website relayed some quotes from CSNNW.com that Harden made about Robinson and he spoke about the player and said that he would work well in Portland with the Blazers. Harden called Robinson a beast and said that he is a very hard worker, solid rebounder and a player that has the chance to turn his career around in Portland. Robinson has all the talent in the world and he was traded mostly for his situation rather than the skills he possesses and now it seems that he will stay in Portland for at least a little while, especially after playing in the Vegas summer league and averaging 10.4 points, 12.8 rebounds and 1.2 blocks through five games.
Amazingly, Robinson was taken ahead of players like Damian Lillard and Harrison Barnes in the draft and now the Blazers have two of those names on the same roster after dealing for Robinson. The young star will likely serve as a backup to LaMarcus Aldridge, who has been rumored in trade talks all offseason, especially last week when reports came out that he met with management to work out ideas for a trade. Reports said that the team went to a number of teams with an offer, including the Bulls, Timberwolves, Pelicans, Clippers and others. Aldridge said that he preferred the Chicago Bulls, but right now that deal seems unlikely.
Harden went on to say that Robinson will be a player that can stick around in the league and play solid basketball, adding that he thinks he can be a special player and that the trades will motivate him to get better. Portland has a number of young players that need time to develop and Robinson is now one of those stars after making the jump from Houston. The Blazers were mentioned in some early reports as an option in a sign and trade with the Bobcats for Gerald Henderson, according to Yahoo Sports, but so far not much on that front has materialized.
Henderson and the Bobcats have had issues on a contract this offseason and the restricted free agent may end up moving teams after averaging 15.5 points, 3.7 rebounds, 2.6 assists and one steal in 31.4 minutes per game last season. The Blazers were seen as an option and they also could end up in a three-team deal depending on what happens with Aldridge this offseason. So far it seems that after initially looking at trades, the team will sit tight with Aldridge.