In a deal that appears to be mostly about saving money for the soon-to-be-sold-one-way-or-another Sacramento Kings, they traded Thomas Robinson, the fifth pick in the draft just eight months ago, along with Francisco Garcia and Tyler Honeycut to the Houston Rockets for Patrick Patterson, Cole Aldrich and Toney Douglas.
At its core, this deal is Robinson for Patterson, and any time you're trading the fifth pick from the most recent draft for the 14th pick from a draft two years earlier (who has played more or less like you would expect a 14th pick to play, no better) it's not a good sign. Either the Kings had seen enough of Robinson in 809 minutes this season to realize that they'd made a huge mistake in the draft, or they're pretty desperate to save money RIGHT NOW. The deal saves them about $3M in payroll this season and the Rockets also included $1M in cash. Ironically though, Patterson will have to be re-signed before Robinson, so it's not as if this is an economical move in the big picture, since rookie deals (which Robinson will be on two years longer than Patterson) are the best source of cheap labor in the NBA.
Robinson was averaging 11 points and almost 11 rebounds per 36 minutes for the Kings, but has had a terrible time finding the basket, shooting just 42% from the field.
Patterson is in the midst of a mini-breakout season for the Rockets, averaging 11.6 points and 4.7 rebounds. He has added a three point shot, making 35-96 this season after going 0-5 his first two years in the league.
Remember that we're trying to keep the general trade deadline conversation on the main deadline day thread.