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#pounditMonday, January 18, 2021

76ers the team to watch for James Harden?

James Harden

There have been numerous reports this week that James Harden is focused on trying to force his way to the Brooklyn Nets, but the Philadelphia 76ers may actually be the more likely landing spot.

Harden supposedly wants to play with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, but ex-NBA player and current analyst Brian Scalabrine said Tuesday that the talk of Harden going to the Nets is “smoke and mirrors.” Scalabrine, and many others, believe the 76ers are the team to watch.

If he does wind up in Brooklyn, Harden would not be the first NBA superstar to force a trade to the team of his choice. However, he has less leverage than some star players before him. Harden has two years remaining on his contract, which means he would not necessarily be a one-year rental for the team that acquired him. The Rockets can, and should, send Harden to the highest bidder if they decide to move on from him.

Though he is said to be focused on the Nets, Harden is also reportedly open to a trade to Philly. That makes sense now that former Rockets GM Daryl Morey has taken over basketball operations for the 76ers. Morey took out a full-page ad thanking the Rockets after he parted ways with them, and the ad focused a lot on Harden.

One potential roadblock for a Rockets-76ers trade could be that Philadelphia is reportedly unwilling to part with a star player that Houston would likely want.

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