NBA rumors: James Harden could consider Nets as trade destination

Ali Thanawalla
·3 min read

Report: Harden could consider Nets as trade destination originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea

Could James Harden and Kevin Durant reunite in Brooklyn?

The idea is on Harden's mind and it is "resonating" with him, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, Ramona Shelburne and Zach Lowe reported Sunday, citing sources.

According to the trio of ESPN reporters, Harden is taking a look at his future with the Houston Rockets, and the Nets are "rising to top of his list" of possible trade destinations.

Durant and Harden, who used to be teammates with the Oklahoma City Thunder, "have recently discussed the possibility" of playing together, according to ESPN.

Wojnarowski made it clear that the Nets and Rockets haven't had any conversations, but players can often dictate the pace of trade talks in the NBA. Simply put, if Harden wants out of Houston and only will go to Brooklyn, the Rockets and Nets will start discussing a trade soon enough.

While Harden seems to be keen on the idea, SNY's Ian Begley reported Sunday, citing sources, that some Nets players aren't fans of Harden joining the team. According to Begley, "people around Harden contacted" Nets players. Some liked the possibility. Some didn't.

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ESPN reported Sunday, citing sources, that new Rockets general manager Rafael Stone wants to "run it back" with Harden as the centerpiece of the franchise, but that might not be Stone's call.

Interestingly, the rumor of a Harden-to-Brooklyn trade first was floated by Forbes writer Farbod Esnaashari on Saturday, although, according to him, the two teams have engaged in trade talks.

Warriors fans likely are salivating at the thought of not having to face Harden three or four times a season with the Rockets, but they're probably trembling at the idea of Harden, Durant and Kyrie Irving on the same team.

The Nets, with just a healthy Durant and Irving, already are considered one of the favorites to represent the Eastern Conference in the NBA Finals. Adding Harden to the mix likely pushes Brooklyn to the top of the East, no matter who the front office surrounds those three stars with.

Imagine if a Nets team led by Durant, Harden and Irving met a retooled Warriors team in the 2021 NBA Finals. The NBA loves storylines, and that potential series would be overflowing with them.

As for the here and now, the Warriors likely will be looking at a very different Rockets team during the 2020-21 season, with Harden and fellow former MVP Russell Westbrook in trade rumors.

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As NBC Sports Bay Area's Brian Witt wrote, if the Rockets decide to tear down their roster, the Warriors should try to acquire Robert Covington or P.J. Tucker with their $17.2 million trade exception, which expires Monday, Nov. 23.

The NBA's "hot stove" is simmering and will boil over Monday when teams can start making trades. Harden to the Nets might just be the blockbuster trade that shifts the balance of power in the NBA.