The Nets have emerged as a possible trade destination for Rockets superstar James Harden, though it remains unclear if Houston is ultimately willing to part ways with the former Most Valuable Player, according to a report from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski, Ramona Shelburne and Zach Lowe.
The idea of joining Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving in Brooklyn has started to resonate with Harden, the trio adds. The Athletic recently reported that Harden remains committed to the Rockets despite a Russell Westbrook trade request.
Harden has also discussed the possibility with Durant (teammates from 2009-12) and has increasingly grown uneasy about Houston’s competitive future, leading him to consider other options, ESPN reports.
Brooklyn has a bevy of assets that could be included in a deal, including Jarrett Allen, Caris LeVert, Spencer Dinwiddie and the No. 19 pick in Wednesday’s draft. Despite Harden’s apparent interest in the team, the Nets and Rockets have yet to engage in trade discussions, according to Wojnarowski, who adds that Houston has continuously stated its interest in retaining Harden for another season.
The Rockets have privately made it clear that if they did eventually entertain the idea of moving Harden, they’d need a “monstrous return of players, draft picks, and pick swaps,” per ESPN. While the Nets are believed to be weighing the viability of pursuing Harden, it’s not clear how willing they’d be to meet that asking price.
Harden is coming off a season that saw him average 34.3 points, 6.6 rebounds and 7.5 assists in 68 games. He shot 44% from the floor and 36% from deep during those contests, further cementing his status as one of the league’s top offensive players.