Houston, We Have a Problem?

Apr 5, 2012; Orlando, FL, USA; Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard (12) reacts after a turnover during the fourth quarter at Amway Center. New York defeated Orlando, 96-80. Mandatory Credit: Douglas Jones-US PRESSWIRE

The Houston Rockets, apparently undeterred by comments that he's not interested, are marshaling resources to make a pitch for Dwight Howard. Early Tuesday, Houston sent Chase Budinger to the Timberwolves for the #18 pick and the rights to Lior Eliyahu, an Israeli forward. Now, there's word they may be able to trade Kyle Lowry to the Raptors for the #8 pick.

That would give the the Rockets the #8, #14, #16 and #18 picks, which could become a big part of what Orlando might want for Howard, although Howard, through his representatives, has reportedly let Houston know that he won't re-sign once his contract runs out in July 2013. The Rockets believe they can convince him to stay and hope to use one of his mentors, Hakeem Olajuwon, to help them. According to reports, Brooklyn remains Howard's preferred destination.

Should the Magic decide against making a Draft Day deal, Marc Stein reports, Houston will keep working to flip those picks as part of package for an impact player, like Josh Smith or go higher in the lottery.

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