A report from Bleacher Report indicates that James Harden isn’t loving his new digs in Brooklyn.
“Harden remains invested in competing for the title in Brooklyn this season, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the situation. But Harden has recently informed several confidants—including former teammates and coaches—of his interest in exploring other opportunities outside of Brooklyn this summer, league sources told Bleacher Report.”
Obviously, the fact that Harden and the Brooklyn Nets failed to agree to an extension before the season is evidence that he might be looking for a new home at the end of this season. According to Fischer’s sources, Harden isn’t a fan of everything in Brooklyn, notably the taxes and the cold weather. Harden confirms the second part.
it’s BRICK in New York! ?
— James Harden (@JHarden13) January 16, 2022
But more importantly, Harden is reportedly taking issue with Kyrie Irving and Steve Nash as well. Irving’s inability to suit up in Brooklyn and Kevin Durant’s injury means that Harden is the lone star for home games, but he’s not playing in Texas anymore.
Tuesday night’s loss to the Los Angeles Lakers highlighted Harden’s reported frustrations. The Nets lost despite a 33-point triple-double from the Beard.
As for Nash, Harden is having trouble with his ever-changing lineups. Injuries, COVID issues, and Irving’s part-time status are contributing factors in why Nash is constantly changing his rotations, but he has also talked about why he likes experimenting with lineups at times.
It’s getting late in the season for that. Harden — and possibly other Nets — would prefer consistency.
According to ESPN’s Kendrick Perkins, Harden’s camp is telling people around the Sixers that he wants to go to Philly.
It’s hard to take anything Perkins says at face value given his history. His rise to the forefront of ESPN is in large part due to his incredible ability to say crazy things loudly. Carry on!
He might be connecting the dots more than reporting actual facts, but what Perk says isn’t crazy. There is a good chance Harden leaves Brooklyn and a slight chance that he ends up in Philly.
So, this begs the question: Should the Nets make the proactive move of trading Harden now rather than risk losing him in free agency?
As much as it would sting to lose a player of Harden’s caliber after trading so much to get him, the Nets can’t part ways with him now, especially with Irving only playing away games. He’s too important to the success of this team right now. Make no mistake about it, with a healthy Durant, the Nets are a bonafide championship contender.
But what about trading Harden in a deal for Ben Simmons? It’s not the worst idea in the world, but it’s an awfully big risk. Perhaps it’s one that would pay off in the long run, but at least for this season, it would lower Brooklyn’s chances at winning it all.
Despite all the noise around Harden, the Nets’ best course of action is to stay the course. Harden might be unhappy behind the scenes, but he knows what a championship would do for his legacy.
Go all-in on this season and worry about the offseason in the offseason.