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James Harden: An Opinion of the Trade

October 29, 2012

Basketball

Reaction to the Harden Trade

Late last night, I received a text from a friend of mine, stating that Harden had been dealt to Houston for Kevin Martin and various other things. My response was, “Wow. That came from no where.” (There was actually an expletive in there somewhere, but nonetheless I’m sure you get the point.) So, late last night I had sent a message to everyone at The Farm Club stating my surprise, and Michael brought up that someone actually called the trade (Steven Nardo, he believed). My response, “Calling the trade wasn’t too difficult, calling it before the beginning of the season, wow.”

Some people were right though, calling the trade at all was easy enough. It just made sense that if OKC couldn’t afford him, they could ship him off down the road, gain a few assets and save some money. Nothing wrong with that I suppose (unless you’re an OKC fan, then you’re probably annoyed). I was wrong to be honest, I figured he was going to stay with OKC for a few more seasons, then get shipped away. Here I am, eating my words. They shipped him away before the start of the regular season.

Let’s run through what OKC is getting for Mr. Harden (and company): guards Kevin Martin, Jeremy Lamb  , as well as two first round picks and a second round pick. Houston receives James Harden (w ho is signing the max contract extension deal with Houston, more on my feeling on that in a moment), center Cole Aldrich, and forwards Daequan Cook and Lazar Haywood.

 

Did Harden deserve a full max extension deal? It really all depends on who you ask and your personal opinion of him and his play. First, I cannot explain how amazing Harden is for coming off the bench. Anywhere else, he starts, but he willing came off the bench to help his team win a championship. Name one other all-star who would do that. Ginobili? Okay fine. Anyway, my point is what Harden did for his team is quite a feat. But, did he really deserve that max deal? In my opinion, what the Thunder were offering him was just right. Not quite the max (mainly because they believed he didn’t deserve it, regardless of what their management says), but not a bare minimum either. He is the reason that OKC made it to the finals, no doubt about that, but he (in my opinion) is also the reason they lost in the finals. I’m not saying they couldn’t have made it to the Finals without Harden, but he definitely helps. I just don’t feel like a guy who cannot preform on the biggest stage, and who is also very streaky, deserves a max-extension.

The next question is how does Oklahoma City look now that Harden is in red?

They’re fine. I really do not anticipate much of a fall off, if any just because of Harden’s trade. They received Kevin Martin, who is a good player, and a nice addition to the team. Jeremy Lamb probably won’t make much of an impact right away, but I could be wrong. Martin will glady take over the role of Harden, and I never thought Fisher would get much playing time either, so what do I know?

Houston probably gave up a bit much for Harden, but either way, they’re more or less in the same position as before: mediocrity. Probably still near the bottom of their division, I just do not see Houston preforming all that well.

At the end of the day, Harden may end up wishing he would have stayed with the Thunder to run at a title, instead of staying at the bottom of the food chain, but either way, he’s still swimming in money.

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About Curtis Dasch

Curtis Dasch is currently a student at Bowling Green State University, majoring in English. He is a go-to for NBA opinions and knowledge of the intangibles, but enjoys most sports in general. Considered a "jack-of-all-trades," he also hosts a weekly gaming podcast known as Satellite Gaming's Satellcasts.

View all posts by Curtis Dasch

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