The Houston Rockets have acquired Brandon Knight from the Phoenix Suns in exchange for Ryan Anderson. Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports the trade, which also includes Marquese Chriss from the Suns and De’Anthony Melton for the Rockets.
Houston has traded Ryan Anderson and De'Anthony Melton to Phoenix for Marquese Chriss and Brandon Knight, league source tells ESPN.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) August 31, 2018
Houston is expected to vie with Golden State in the top echelon of the NBA Western Conference playoffs race this season, while Phoenix is presumed to be a bottom-feeder. That status will not change with the acquisition of Anderson, a 29-year-old, three-point shooting forward who averaged 9.3 ppg last season. Melton, the 46th overall pick in the 2018 NBA Draft, is even less prominent.
Knight was once a highly-regarded scoring guard, averaging 19.6 ppg in 2015-16 before dropping to 11.0 the following season, then suffering an ACL injury which kept him out for all of 2017-18. Chriss is a 20 mpg power forward with a little bit of scoring and significant rebounding prowess.
In addition to getting the better of the talent exchange, the Rockets also saved money in the deal. Together Knight and Chriss are slated to make approximately $17.9 million this season, $19.6 next. That combined total does not equal Anderson’s salary of $20.4 million and $21.3 million.
Wojnarowski also reports that the Suns are hoping that unheralded point guard Shaquille Harrison can play a bigger role this season. Even so, it’s hard to imagine that no other shoes drop for Phoenix, unless this is a pure tanking move or Knight is not expected to recover fully.
It looks like they found a way to address the salary imbalance.
To clear the way for a trade out of Houston, Ryan Anderson agreed to reduce the guarantee on his $21M salary in 2019-20 to $15.6M, league sources told ESPN. For the Suns, the $15.6M represents Brandon Knight’s salary for the 2019-20 season.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) August 31, 2018