Before Philadelphia 76ers guard James Harden arrived in the city of brotherly love, he left a situation in Brooklyn that was tenuous at best. Harden was traded to the Nets in January of 2021 and played 80 games for the team before being traded to the Sixers.
Similar to why he wanted to leave Brooklyn, Harden was dissatisfied with the direction of the Rockets at the time as they were unable to get over the hump in the Western Conference to get to the Finals. Houston could never find a consistent Robin to Harden’s Batman and once the opportunity came to team up with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, Harden did anything he could to convince the Rockets to trade him.
It was the first time that Harden forced himself out of a situation and in a chain of events that may sound familiar to Nets fans, he did the same thing in Brooklyn. Clippers guard John Wall and the rest of the “Tidal League” podcast discuss how Harden got his trade to Brooklyn and what those moments were like:
“Trash. Beyond trash because I’m going there thinking James is gonna be there. You know what I mean? Once I get traded, but he already wants out. When I landed, I’m like ‘Oh, I’m about to land. I’m about to go do my conference (expletive).’ He like ‘Well, I’m on my way to Atlanta for Lil Baby’s birthday’. I’m like (John stares in disbelief). He talking about ‘You wanna get on the jet with me?’ Like (expletive), I just got traded here. I gotta be on good terms. Like, I don’t know how the owner is, the GM is, I don’t know nothing. This ain’t like I’m in DC. If I was in DC, I’d be like ‘Hell yeah, we out’. It’s my show. This ain’t my show over here…so he don’t come to training camp, none of that. So that news is all toxic. For me, I ain’t played in two years. Mom passed, Achilles, and COVID. So I’m like, ‘I don’t give a (expletive) who playing or no. I just want to hoop. That’s it.”