All we know right now is that star guard James Harden no longer wants to play for the 76ers. At least, not as long as team president Daryl Morey is in charge.
That’s what Harden said, anyway.
As multiple outlets have reported, Harden prefers a trade to the Clippers. Sources have told Hoops Wire the same thing. But several of those sources are now saying that Harden is also open to other potential destinations.
So he is angling for a trade to LA, where he would theoretically play alongside star forwards Kawhi Leonard and Paul George. But Morey and the Sixers supposedly have had no interest in what the Clippers can offer. The idea for the Sixers, if they trade Harden, is to remain in contention. They have made that clear.
And if Harden truly doesn’t want to play in Philadelphia anymore, he may have to extend his list of desired destinations. According to sources, he understands that.
Several teams outside of the Clippers have internally discussed the idea of adding Harden, though have done so cautiously. Harden is on a one-year, $35.6 million deal. So rival teams don’t want to give up multiple assets without assurances Harden would stay beyond next season.
But for once, it seems as if more than just the Clippers could be in play.
Not only that, Harden himself is even “hesitant” about playing for the Clippers, a source told Brandon Robinson of Bally Sports. Harden is from Los Angeles and playing in front of your hometown fans comes with some added pressure.
Of course, maybe this is just your typical offseason drama and Harden and the Sixers will eventually make up. That has to be considered a possibility, sources said.
“I think he’s good wherever he ends up to be honest,” one member of the Clippers told Robinson, “but Philly running it back would make the most sense.”
James Harden is in Greece right now on vacation & he’s expressed interest in only two places: the Los Angeles Clippers or a return to the Philadelphia 76ers.
Sources tell @BallySports that the Clippers are currently Harden’s preferred destination but with some hesitation.
— ? Brandon “Scoop B” Robinson (@ScoopB) June 30, 2023