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NBA Trade Rumors: The case for and against the Brooklyn Nets acquiring James Harden this off-season

Los Angeles Lakers vs Houston Rockets - Game Four
Los Angeles Lakers vs Houston Rockets - Game Four
ANALYST
Modified 15 Nov 2020, 18:00 IST
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The Houston Rockets disappointed once again in the NBA Playoffs. After the arrival of Russell Westbrook, many expected his pairing with James Harden to result in a deep postseason run for the Rockets. Instead, the team floundered in the second round in the playoffs last season. Since their early exit, the team has been surrounded by a bevy of NBA trade rumors that have speculated Harden to be traded away this off-season. The Brooklyn Nets are among the many franchises reportedly interested in acquiring James Harden.

The Nets are expected to be contenders next season, and with good reason. With Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving leading the team, they have become arguably the strongest team in the East. The team has been looking for a third star to bolster its title hopes next year. While many may have expected the likes of Jrue Holiday to arrive at the franchise, it seems the Brooklyn Nets may have their heart set on James Harden.

On that note, let us have a look at why it makes sense for the Brooklyn Nets to go after James Harden this off-season and why it doesn't.

NBA Trade Rumors: The case for the Brooklyn Nets acquiring James Harden

James Harden
James Harden

The Brooklyn Nets are a powerhouse right now but not to the extent that most in the NBA community expect the franchise to be.

Kevin Durant may not be a player too reliant on athleticism, but he has just come off an Achilles injury. While it's unlikely to be a career-ending one, the ramifications of the same on the player's game is an unknown proposition at the moment.

For that reason, the Brooklyn Nets have been the subject of numerous NBA trade rumors, and James Harden could be a perfect fit at the franchise.

As bizarre as it may sound, Kevin Durant may only be good enough to be the second or even third option on a team next season. With Kyrie Irving not being the best first option, the Brooklyn Nets could look towards James Harden. The 31-year-old is arguably the best scorer in the game today and could excel as the team's first option.

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Moreover, with enough shooting and secondary playmaking prowess around him, James Harden could fit seamlessly in the Brooklyn Nets roster and propel them towards the NBA championship.

In that perspective, it makes sense for the Brooklyn Nets to pay heed to this NBA trade rumor and land James Harden this off-season.


NBA Trade Rumors: The case against the Brooklyn Nets acquiring James Harden

Brooklyn Nets
Brooklyn Nets

While the Brooklyn Nets are in need of a scorer, they need one who can thrive off the ball as well.

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James Harden had one of the highest player usage rates in the NBA, but that ceased to be the case when Russell Westbrook came in, and that had an effect on the Houston Rockets' fortunes. Many may only blame Westbrook for the same, but in reality, the Beard experienced a severe dip in his performances.

Moreover, James Harden is unlikely to accept an off-the-ball role, no matter how strong the team could be.

Harden's unwillingness to take up an off-the-ball role meant that the Houston Rockets faltered last season. Many experts argue that if Harden had taken up a more off-the-ball role, the Houston Rockets could have been better of for it. But the 31-year-old apparently refused to do so, resulting in the team completely imploding during the postseason.

Overall, while James Harden is a terrific scorer, his penchant to have the ball in his hands just wouldn't fit at the Brooklyn Nets. For that reason alone, the Brooklyn Nets must refrain from making a move for Harden this off-season.

Also Read: Goran Dragic 'open to all suggestions' with regards to Free Agency.

Published 15 Nov 2020, 18:00 IST
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