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Report: Warriors, Rockets eyeing Knicks center Kyle O’Quinn prior to deadline

Kyle O'quinn

The Golden State Warriors and the Houston Rockets have set their eyes on New York Knicks backup Kyle O’Quinn, who is in the midst of a four-man logjam at the center position, according to ESPN’s Ian Begley.

Both interested teams are looking to bolster their depth at center, while the Knicks are looking to thin their ranks and establish a steadier pattern.

“O’Quinn has certainly outperformed his contract,” said David Jacober, a strategic planning consultant for NBA teams. “His diversity on offense makes him attractive to a number of teams, such as Houston and Golden State.”

The Warriors have left JaVale McGee out of the rotation — giving Kevon Looney and veteran David West the majority of the minutes at center after starter Zaza Pachulia heads back to the bench. The absence of Jordan Bell due to injury will make them look for an insurance policy, with McGee likely being the odd man out.

Steve Kerr has favored dual-position players to tinker with lineups throughout the season and throw different looks at opposing coaches. O’Quinn could suit that position with his ability to shoot the ball from mid-range and his bruising style of defense and motor on the offensive glass.

The Rockets have done well by developing Clint Capela into a key contributor, but they are thin once he leaves the floor, with the veteran big man Nene likely on the last legs of his NBA career. Getting another contributing center at the defensive end could enhance the process of mastering a three-and-D mold for Mike D’Antoni’s core heading into the playoffs.

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