Thursday, April 24, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Rockets trade with Suns, Kings

Thomas Robinson

the first half of an NBA basketball game in Memphis, Tenn., Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013. (AP Photo/Danny Johnston)

HOUSTON — The Houston Rockets have reached separate agreements on trades that will send Patrick Patterson, Cole Aldrich and Toney Douglas to Sacramento and Marcus Morris to Phoenix, a person familiar with the situation said Wednesday.

The Rockets will receive Thomas Robinson, the No. 5 pick in last year’s draft, Francisco Garcia and Tyler Honeycutt from the Kings, according to the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal had not been announced and was still pending league approval.

In the other deal, the person said the Rockets will receive a future second-round pick from the Suns in exchange for Morris, who will join his twin older brother, Markieff, on the Phoenix roster.

“If I was to be traded, that’s where I would want to go,” Marcus Morris said outside the Rockets’ locker room. “I think Houston knew that. That’s all I did was talk about my brother and how happy I was to play with him. I’m excited. That’s all I can say.”

Patterson, Aldrich and Douglas walked out of the Toyota Center just as Houston was starting its game against Oklahoma City, on the eve of the trading deadline. The Rockets came into the game holding the No. 8 spot in the Western Conference and the moves were unexpected.

The 6-foot-9 Patterson had started 38 games for Houston this season and was the Rockets’ fourth-leading scorer, averaging 11.6 points. Douglas was acquired in the offseason in a trade with New York and he played in 49 games backing up Jeremy Lin. The 6-11 Aldrich, acquired in the James Harden trade with Oklahoma City just before the season, averaged 1.7 points in 30 games for Houston this season.

Sacramento had high hopes for the 6-10 Robinson, but he’s disappointed so far, averaging only 4.8 points and 4.7 rebounds in 16 minutes per game. His most notable NBA moment so far might have come when he elbowed Detroit’s Jonas Jerebko in the neck during a game in November. Robinson was ejected and suspended two games by the NBA.

Kings general manager Geoff Petrie had hinted that he’d only make minor moves before the trade deadline because of the pending purchase agreement that could move the franchise to Seattle next season.

Marcus Morris had played in all but one of Houston’s games this season, making 17 starts. He was averaging 8.6 points and 4.1 rebounds per game. The Suns took Markieff with the 13th pick in 2011 draft and Marcus was right behind him again, going to Houston at No. 14.

Morris was all smiles about the deal on Wednesday night, even though the Suns entered their game against Golden State with the worst record in the West (18-36).

“It’s my first trade,” Morris said. “All I kept hearing was, it’s a business. It happens. I mean, it does happen. I’m excited to see where my career can go from here.”

Suns coach Lindsey Hunter wouldn’t talk about the deal specifically, but acknowledged that Phoenix is building for the future.

“We’re trying to get better,” he said. “We’re trying to build a foundation of something that we hope will last.”

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

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