Rockets News

Three pros and cons to trading James Harden

HOUSTON, TEXAS - FEBRUARY 24: James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets looks on from the bench during the fourth quarter against the New York Knicks at Toyota Center on February 24, 2020 in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TEXAS - FEBRUARY 24: James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets looks on from the bench during the fourth quarter against the New York Knicks at Toyota Center on February 24, 2020 in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
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Houston Rockets
Houston Rockets James Harden (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Pro No.2: End the headache

If James Harden continues to be a no-show for Rockets training camp while RSVPing to every rappers’ birthday party the headache for the Rockets could become too much to bear. Moving on from Harden will allow the franchise to refocus and regain a semblance of normalcy.

Stephen Silas is a first-year head coach and the team is trying to integrate Christian Wood and John Wall. The will-he won’t-he with Harden will make it hard for the team to build around its new additions, while also putting their new head coach under an immense amount of unnecessary media pressure.

Teams avoid distractions for a reason because while they shouldn’t cause the play on the court to suffer they almost always do. The media follows the story and an unhappy James Harden will dominate every Rockets’ game.

Every Rockets’ loss will lead to questions about whether or not Harden will move and every win will lead to questions if he will stay. It’ll become increasingly frustrating for the team to have to answer every question through the lens of James Harden.

Basketball is played by five men and if one player’s antics are weighing the other four down then it makes sense to move on from the one causing everyone else problems. Sometimes addition by subtraction is the best route for a franchise to take, even when you’re subtracting a player as talented as James Harden.

It’s unfortunate that Harden has decided to go this route to see his way out but it has the chance to tank a promising season. If the Rockets believe that trade rumors will cause the team to suffer on and off the court they should move on and see what they really have.

Next: Pro no. 1

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