James Harden Trade To Nets Confirmed
It has now been confirmed by reliable insiders that the Houston Rockets on Wednesday officially traded Harden to the Brooklyn Nets in a 4-team blockbuster deal involving the Rockets, the Nets, the Indiana Pacers, and the Cleveland Cavaliers. Confirming the news were two people closely familiar with the latest NBA trade deal. Both have requested anonymity as the trade has not yet been announced officially.
Also involved are multiple first-round picks headed to Houston, as well as Dante Exum and Rodions Kurucs. On the receiving end will be the Cavaliers, who will be acquiring Taurean Prince and Jarrett Allen, and also the Pacers, who will be welcoming Caris LeVert in return for sending Victor Oladipo to Houston.
What’s more, Houston will receive a total of four unprotected pics (fist-round), two of which will be incoming in 2022, one in 2024, and the last one in 2026.
Harden The Final Catalyst
Houston has been trying to trade Harden for quite some time, but until recently, could not find the right deal at the right value. What ultimately lit the final fuse were Harden’s derogatory comments about the Rockets following Tuesday’s 117-100 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers.
Tuesday’s loss marked Houston’s second in a row to the L.A. Lakers, leaving Harden, who yet again got restricted to a record low of below-20, looking disconnected and deflated and referring to Houston as a team that cannot be fixed.
But Harden has proved a problematic player for Houston and head coach Stephen Silas for quite some time. He earlier in the season got fined $50,000 for refusing to follow the NBA’s health and safety protocols. He also recently arrived late at training camp.
Nets Can Only Benefit
The trade sees Harden reuniting with Kevin Durant – and possibly joining forces with Kyrie Irving, pending the latter’s return. Irving has missed the last five Nets games, citing the most recent four to have been missed due to reasons of a personal nature. His return isn’t guaranteed.
The deal however still puts the Nets in an improved position as far as the Eastern Conference championship is concerned, with or without Irving. Brooklyn is currently poised at 6-6, and may well end up with three stars should the chips fall in their favour.