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Rockets acquire rights to Andersen

THE Houston Rockets, searching for a big man to fill in for injured center Yao Ming, have acquired the rights to Australian David Andersen, the National Basketball Association team said on Tuesday.

"David has been a winner with every team he has played for in Europe," Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey was quoted as saying on the team's Website.

"He is a very well-rounded player who possesses good offensive skills and a very good shooting touch for a big man."

The 2.11-meter Andersen averaged 11.1 points and 4.1 rebounds to help Regal FC Barcelona win the 2008-09 Spanish championship and a berth in the Euroleague Final Four. Andersen was a member of Euroleague championship teams with Virtus Bologna (2001) in Italy and CSKA Moscow (2006 and 2008) in Russia.

He was also a member of the 2004 and 2008 Australian Olympic teams.

Andersen, 29, was picked by Atlanta in the second round of the 2002 Draft. The Rockets sent cash and future considerations to the Hawks in exchange for Andersen, the Rockets said.

"David is a versatile post player who should fit well in coach (Rick) Adelman's system," Morey suggested.

Yao, the Rockets' Chinese center, has a severe left foot injury that has not healed as expected and has thrown his future into doubt.

"At this point, the injury has the potential for him missing this next season and could be career-threatening," team doctor Tom Clanton told the Houston Chronicle last month.


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