Report: Houston Rockets trade Chase Budinger to Minnesota Timberwolves for No. 18 pick

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The Houston Rockets have traded forward Chase Budinger to the Minnesota Timberwolves for the No. 18 pick in Thursday's NBA Draft, according to multiple reports on Twitter.

[tweet https://twitter.com/DraftExpress/status/217616711539621888]

[tweet https://twitter.com/WojYahooNBA/status/217617426538438656]

The Rockets now own the No. 14, 16 and 18 picks in the first round of the draft. It is believed that Houston is trying to put together a package to trade to the Orlando Magic for center Dwight Howard.

ESPN.com reported Sunday that the Rockets wanted to acquire a pair of top-10 picks they could then use as part of a deal for Howard. That report said Sacramento's No. 5 pick and Toronto's No. 8 pick were available. Houston, with its three first-round picks, may have enough ammunition to acquire both picks if it is willing to include point guard Kyle Lowry.

The wisdom of a trade for Howard has been questioned, as NBA.com's David Aldridge reported there is "not a chance" Howard would sign a long-term contract with the Rockets. Still, it appears the trade of Budinger likely has a larger acquisition as its end goal.