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Rumor: Houston Rockets shopping Patrick Beverley

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He’s not Chris Paul or Kyle Lowry, but he would be an excellent fit in Denver.

NBA: Playoffs-San Antonio Spurs at Houston Rockets Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports

The Denver Nuggets are looking to improve their defense this offseason, and one of the best defensive guards in the NBA is reportedly on the trading block.

According to Sean Deveney of Sporting News, the Houston Rockets are actively shopping Patrick Beverley.

The Houston Rockets have been actively shopping point guard Patrick Beverley, a source with knowledge of the situation told Sporting News on Tuesday.

Beverley, who averaged 9.5 points, 5.9 rebounds and 4.2 assists last season, has been open to a trade away from Houston leading into this offseason, the source said, and has consulted with the team about the possible move. The Rockets could get a deal done before Thursday’s draft.

Much like the Kyle Lowry rumor yesterday, this story expresses that Beverley is open to a trade and has met with the team about such a move.

Beverley has been a great fit next to James Harden over the last few years as a defender of the opponent’s most skilled guard, while willing to cede most if not all of his touches on the other end. He’s a solid role player and has improved his efficiency over the years, shooting 40.0% and 38.2% from 3-point range in each of the last two seasons.

If the reports are correct that Chris Paul and other top free agents are considering Houston as an attractive destination, then Beverley could be moved. Also from the Deveney report:

Beverley, a likely choice for one of the NBA’s All-Defense teams, is entering the third year of a four-year, $25 million contract with Houston, and is scheduled to be paid $10.5 million over the next two years. The Rockets have been planning to pursue first-tier free agents this summer, and could be willing to move Beverley if it helps create cap space.

Beverley would be an excellent fit in Denver, almost a perfect fit, as a quality backup. He’s an excellent defender and will possibly make an All-Defensive team this year, in addition to being a quality 3-point shooter and complementary offensive player. Slotting him in as the backup to Jamal Murray would provide the Nuggets with a solid upgrade in the backcourt.

Ideally, Denver can sign-and-trade Danilo Gallinari to Houston, a destination that would fit him perfectly. Unfortunately, if the report is true that the Rockets want to move Beverley by Thursday night, then that scenario would be impossible. The report also stated that the Rockets are looking for Tier A free agents, whereas Danilo Gallinari is pretty firmly in Tier B.

If the Nuggets desire a player of Beverley’s caliber, they may need to think outside the box with regard to trade proposals. Beverley the player is a great fit, but there may not be a deal that fits Houston’s timeline and provides them extra cap space without giving up a first round draft pick.

Whatever the case may be, the rumor mill is churning out some juicy news, and the draft is over 48 hours away.