UPDATE: Nov. 17, 6:13 p.m. — The Rockets and Wizards have discussed a deal involving Westbrook and John Wall, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported Tuesday. There hasn’t been much traction yet, per Shams. This deal would make it easier for the other side. Wall and Westbrook’s salaries are basically the same super max contract. Wall is coming off major injury, so the Rockets are seeking more assets in the deal. Perhaps if Washington throws in a prospect and a few picks and something can get done. If Wall can bounce back
UPDATE: Nov. 13, 2:40 p.m. — The Knicks — shocker — are on a short list of viable trade destinations for Westbrook, Marc Stein of The New York Times reported Friday afternoon. The Knicks were always going to be a popular choice as a potential spot for Westbrook. This doesn’t mean New York is interested, it just means the Knicks make sense logistically if they are willing to absorb the salary. Stein also mentions it would mean Westbrook is the player the Knicks would build around. It isn’t like you can’t win with Westbrook as the go-to guy or 1A-1B situation.
UPDATE: Nov. 12, 11:08 a.m. — the Charlotte Hornets have emerged as a potential trade destination for Westbrook, Shams reported early Thursday.
Well, we’ve got our first SHAM BOMB of the offseason! Houston Rockets PG Russell Westbrook wants out of Houston, per The Athletic’s Shams Charania. This comes less than 12 hours after ESPN reported that James Harden and Westbrook were both unsure about their futures with the franchise.
UPDATE: Harden remains committed to the Rockets this season, per Shams.
Houston's James Harden remains committed to the Rockets and is "locked in" for the season, sources tell @KellyIkoNBA and me.— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) November 12, 2020
Both Harden and Westbrook have two years left on their max contracts. Harden hasn’t been reported as wanting a trade. This would be the second time Westbrook would be traded in the past two seasons after heading to the Rockets from the Thunder before 2019-20.
The Rockets went through a bit of a makeover in the front office and sidelines this offseason. Coach Mike D’Antoni didn’t re-up with the franchise and is going to be an assistant for the Brooklyn Nets under new coach Steve Nash. Rockets general manager Daryl Morey left the Rockets and is now in charge of the Philadelphia 76ers. So with no D’Antoni or Morey in Houston, it’s clear that changes are on the horizon and Harden and Westbrook aren’t about that life.
Houston brought in Stephen Silas to replace D’Antoni and Rafael Stone replaced Morey as GM. Silas had said that he’s excited to coach both All-Star guards and was looking forward to making it work for the Rockets. That may not be the case if Westbrook forces a trade. This doesn’t necessarily mean Harden will chuck the deuces up as well. For what it’s worth, there had been some rumblings around the League that Westbrook might be interested in joining the New York Knicks. That’s mostly just a rumor at this point, but it wouldn’t surprise anyone to see the Knicks jump at the chance to land Westbrook.