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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Ben DuBose

Report: Rockets show exploratory interest in signing Nerlens Noel

Free agent center Nerlens Noel has drawn exploratory interest from the New York Knicks, Houston Rockets and Charlotte Hornets, according to Friday’s report by HoopsHype’s Michael Scotto.

The Rockets traded for veteran center Steven Adams prior to the NBAs Feb. 8 in-season deadline, but he will not be available until next season due to an injury. Houston also considered moves for big-man depth among players that are available to play this season, but they weren’t able to come to terms on trade compensation.

A free agent signing, which wouldn’t need asset compensation, could be more palatable to general manager Rafael Stone.

Noel, a 10-year NBA veteran, has averaged 7.1 points (54.6% FG), 6.1 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks in 22.0 minutes per game over his career. The 6-foot-10 big man is 29 years old.

If he is signed by the Rockets (24-30), Noel would join Jeff Green and Jock Landale as backup options for head coach Ime Udoka behind incumbent starter Alperen Sengun.

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