Following their inability to secure a favorable trade deal, the Philadelphia 76ers have decided not to comply with star guard James Harden’s trade request, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
This decision might lead to an uncomfortable scenario as the upcoming training camp draws near. Wojnarowski also verified the reasons behind Harden’s dissatisfaction with the front office.
Sources indicate that Harden’s discontent stems from Sixers president Daryl Morey’s failure to present a long-term maximum-level contract offer. This situation potentially jeopardizes the team’s chances of fostering a championship-focused atmosphere when Harden arrives for training camp.
As per Wojnarowski’s report, Philadelphia had initially agreed to explore potential trade options when James Harden opted to exercise his $35.6 million player option in June. However, Wojnarowski mentioned that the Sixers’ trade demands were substantial, and unfortunately, no other teams were willing to meet those requirements.
Away from the trade rumors, Shams Charania also tweeted about James Harden expressing his discontent with the 76ers president. Harden revealed this information to a group of fans during a casual conversation on his tour in China.
James Harden: “Daryl Morey is a liar and I will never be a part of an organization that he’s a part of. Let me say that again: Daryl Morey is a liar and I will never be a part of an organization that he’s a part of.” pic.twitter.com/AmHJ0WwbF2
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) August 14, 2023
As he approaches his 34th birthday on August 26th, James Harden maintained an impressive performance in the previous season with averages of 21.0 points, a league-leading 10.7 assists, and 6.1 rebounds.
Clippers Deal Collapsed
Speculation emerged that the Los Angeles Clippers were a contender for Harden’s services, aligning with his “desired destination,” as reported by Wojnarowski. Unfortunately, the two teams failed to make significant progress towards a potential deal.
Consequently, Harden is currently back with the Philadelphia 76ers. In collaboration with NBA MVP Joel Embiid, he led the team to the playoffs’ second round last year, eventually losing to the Boston Celtics in seven games.
Assuming Harden remains on the roster, Philadelphia should maintain competitiveness in the competitive Eastern Conference, although the league’s intensity remains a challenge.
The focus now shifts to the team’s future. As Harden approaches free agency after this season, it’s reasonable to assume that he might look to depart if he remains with the 76ers throughout the year.
The pivotal question arises regarding the potential of the 76ers trading Harden before the deadline if their performance deteriorates.
This decision may hinge on the team’s performance up until that point. Regardless, both Philadelphia and Harden find themselves in an unfavorable situation with the regular season merely two months away.