Missiles traded Victor Oladipo for Kevin Porter Jr.

While Houston’s trade return from Miami for Victor Oladipo looks a bit disappointing, some of the apparent motivation for the Rockets was based on something that wasn’t in the Heat’s final package.

Per Jonathan figs of the Houston Chronicle, the Rockets have moved the deadline – as opposed to keeping Oladipo and trying to move him in an off-season sign-and-trade – because they wanted to give more playing time to 20-year-old security guard Kevin Porter Jr. next to John Wall.

Fig wrote:

The Rockets made the trade because they preferred starting Kevin Porter Jr. in a backcourt with John Wall and giving Porter consistent playing time, according to two people with knowledge of the team’s thinking.

Oladipo’s relocation became an essential part of that plan. That could also indicate that after 20 consistently disappointing games, they decided that they would not keep Oladipo as a free agent, leading to the decision to get what they could for him by the deadline.

In seven games with the Rockets, Porter – a pick from the first round of the 2019 NBA draft – averaged 14.9 points and 6.4 assists in 29.1 minutes per game. He started four of those seven games, but only when at least one of Oladipo and Wall was offside.

While the six-foot guard has largely played on the point guard in Houston, DJ Augustin Porter’s recent trade purchase would presumably allow him to spend most of his minutes on shooting guard.