Hawks make trade with Rockets for Washington Jr. and Garuba

NBA: DEC 26 Rockets at Bulls

The Hawks have reached a deal with the Houston Rockets, sending Alpha Kaba to Houston in exchange for TyTy Washington Jr., Usman Garuba, Houston’s 2028 second rounder, rights to Minnesota’s 2025 second rounder, and $1.1 million in cash.

The Hawks drafted Alpha Kaba back in 2017 with the 60th overall pick. He did not record a single game played.

TyTy Washington Jr., point guard out of the University of Kentucky, was drafted 29th overall by the Grizzlies in a pick traded to Houston. Washington averaged just 4.7 points, 1.5 assists, and 1.5 rebounds per game in 31 games for the Rockets this season. In those 31 games, he only logged an average of 14 minutes per game. However, during eight games in the G-League, Washington averaged 26.6 points, 6.1 assists, and 4.3 rebounds. He wasn’t entirely efficient (40.5 FG% and 25.7 3FG%) but at just 21 years old, the potential is there. If you want to get excited about him, look no further than his 53 point masterclass for Rio Grande Valley this year.

Usman Garuba was drafted with the 23rd overall pick in the 2021 draft after spending time with Real Madrid in the EuroLeague and the Liga ACB. In his two years with Houston, he averaged 2.8 points, and 3.9 rebounds in an average of 12.2 minutes per game. He is known to play well on the defensive end, and his stats per 40 minutes for the 2022-2023 season are more promising. He appeared in 75 games, averaging 9.3 points and 12.7 rebounds (per/40 basis) with a 56.9 true shooting percentage.

All in all, the Hawks acquired two young players and draft compensation for what seems like nothing. This was certainly a consolidation move for the Rockets as they cleared up around $5 million in cap space. With no further details at this time, it is likely fans will get to see both of these players on the Summer League roster and judge for themselves.

Photo: Melissa Tamez/Icon Sportswire

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