Should the Rockets be allowing James Harden to dictate their future?

Brooklyn Nets v Houston Rockets
Brooklyn Nets v Houston Rockets / Carmen Mandato/GettyImages

Much has been made about the Houston Rockets' pursuit of James Harden this offseason, as the franchise would surely love to bring one of its icons back home. The Rockets would also benefit from a point guard, which Harden has been with the Philadelphia 76ers and the Brooklyn Nets, not to mention a veteran with 14 consecutive years of postseason success.

Granted, other options exist, like Toronto Raptors looming free agent point guard Fred VanVleet, but Harden captured the hearts of many Rockets fans during his nine-year stint in Houston, which saw him morph from a Sixth Man to an MVP and three-time scoring champion. There's also the fact that the Rockets could have a short list of marquee players that would have interest in coming to Houston. due to the state of the franchise, without a gargantuan contract. And even though the Rockets are slated to have north of $61 million in cap space, they don't want to be left holding an albatross of a contract that could be hard to trade or get rid of.

But is the Rockets' pursuit of Harden going to negatively affect their looming coaching search, which is expected to begin almost immediately after the regular season ends?

Should the Houston Rockets be allowing James Harden to dictate their future?

According to Jake Fischer of Yahoo Sports, the Rockets could be interested in Nick Nurse, Scott Brooks, and Pistons assistant coach Rex Kalamian as potential candidates for their soon-to-be vacant coaching position, as all three have a prior relationship with Harden.

Should the Rockets be making decisions based on a player that isn't on their roster though? Regardless of how strong the front office believes their relationship may be with Harden, what if he decides to stay with the Philadelphia 76ers and two-time scoring champion Joel Embiid?

Surely it won't be easy to walk away from playing next to the potential MVP, right? How would the franchise handle it if they hire someone based on their ties to Harden, only to see Harden leave them hanging at the altar and stay in Philadelphia?

Is it smart to allow Harden to potentially impact the coaching ability for yet another coach, much like what happened with Silas? These are all questions that the Rockets' brainpower is hopefully mulling over.

If not, they could be potentially losing out on a qualified coaching candidate, simply because he doesn't have ties to Harden. If the Rockets want to pursue Harden, that's understandable, for reasons listed above (and more).

But regardless of what happens with Harden, the Rockets have other pressing decisions that need to be made, irrespective of what happens with Harden. Giving him that power before he even signs here is essentially the franchise counting their eggs before they hatch, and potentially setting themselves up for disappointment all over again.