Rockets, Suns announce Anderson trade

The Phoenix Suns proved the National Basketball Association offseason never stops, even in late August, trading Brandon Knight and Marquese Chriss to the Houston Rockets.

The Rockets had been looking to move Anderson and the $41 million he is owed over the next two seasons. His shooting ability simply couldn't compensate for his defensive struggles and inability to switch onto smaller players, which became a trademark of the Rockets' revamped defense last season. Taken with the eighth overall pick in the 2016 draft, the 21-year-old Chriss is an incredible athlete with 3-point range, but he never carved out a groove in the crowded Suns frontcourt.

The Suns' biggest takeaway from the trade will be point guard De'Anthony Melton.

To clear the way for a trade out of Houston, Anderson agreed to reduce the guarantee on his $21 million salary in 2019-20 to $15.6 million, league sources told ESPN. Anderson opens it up for the prized center to go to work, while spacing the floor for other shooters as well.

Knight, who missed the entire 2017-18 season after tearing his left ACL in the summer of 2017, is cleared to play this season. He averaged 13.6 points per game two years ago, his first season in Houston.

Meanwhile, Knight hasn't played in an National Basketball Association game since February 2017 thanks to various injuries.

The Suns traded for Anderson with an expectation that he could start at power forward. The Rockets will receive 2016 No. 8 overall pick Marquese Chriss.

Chriss, who is remarkably athletic and has a 7-foot-1 wing span, averaged 9.2 points and played in all 82 games as a rookie. He averaged a career-high 19.8 points per game in 2013-14 with New Orleans.

Knight will get minutes in a reserve role behind Chris Paul.

  • Stacy Allen