James Harden traded to Clippers after turbulent summer with 76ers

Daryl Morey’s lengthy national ordeal has finally come to an end. The Philadelphia 76ers executive has agreed to trade James Harden, a 10-time NBA All-Star and former MVP, to the Los Angeles Clippers. This trade was confirmed early Tuesday morning by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. According to Wojnarowski, the 76ers will receive Marcus Morris, Nic Batum, Robert Covington, Kenyon Martin Jr., and multiple draft picks in return. Philadelphia will be getting a 2028 unprotected first-round pick, two second-round picks, a pick swap, and an additional first-round pick from a third team. P.J. Tucker and Filip Petrušev will also be involved in the trade and will be heading to LA.

To complete the deal, the 76ers will waive Danny Green in order to free up a roster spot, as reported by Wojnarowski. Harden has not played in any games this season and was recently stopped from boarding the team’s plane for their season-opening road trip. The NBA opened an investigation into his absence, but he returned to the team’s bench for their home opener. Harden was set to practice with the team again on Tuesday and make his debut as early as Thursday. However, things have taken a different turn as he will now be joining the Clippers and it is currently unclear when he will make his debut with the team. The Clippers have won two out of their first three games this season and will be facing the Orlando Magic on Tuesday night.

According to ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne, Harden is “ecstatic” about joining the Clippers and could possibly be present at Crypto.com Arena for Tuesday’s game. News of Harden’s trade request to the Sixers came on the eve of free agency, when he exercised his $35.6 million option for the 2023-24 season. He made it clear at a promotional event in China last month that he did not want to be part of an organization that Daryl Morey is associated with, calling Morey a liar. This resulted in a $100,000 fine for Harden from the NBA for indicating that he would not fulfill his contract obligations unless traded.

Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer reported that Morey was not surprised by Harden’s comments and remains determined to get fair value in return for the player he once called the best offensive player of all time. The success of this trade will be closely monitored by reigning league MVP Joel Embiid, as the dynamics of the team are now shifting with Ben Simmons being traded for Harden. Last season, Harden averaged 21 points, 10.7 assists, and 6.1 rebounds over 58 games, helping Philadelphia reach Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals.

Although Harden is no longer the same player he was from 2016-2020 when he won three scoring titles and finished top-three in MVP voting for four consecutive seasons, his playmaking skills remain exceptional. However, there are concerns about his health and commitment to winning, as he has been plagued by soft-tissue injuries in recent years. Harden has also been known to leave teams when he feels he doesn’t have a chance at winning a championship, as evidenced by his departures from the Houston Rockets and Brooklyn Nets.

This trade to the Clippers marks the latest chapter in what has been a peculiar superstar career for James Harden.


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