Nuggets Won’t Trade Murray In Potential Harden Deal

The Nuggets have reportedly spoken to the Rockets about the possibility of a James Harden trade, but Denver would be unwilling to include Jamal Murray in any offer for the former MVP, according to Mike Singer of The Denver Post.

As Singer explains, Murray’s impressive postseason run during the Orlando restart over the summer underscored why the Nuggets gave him a maximum-salary extension a year ago. It also demonstrated why Denver views the 23-year-old as a long-term franchise cornerstone alongside Nikola Jokic, who – of course – also wouldn’t be available in any Harden discussions.

With Jokic and Murray off the table, the most obvious centerpiece in a potential Nuggets offer would be Michael Porter Jr. The 22-year-old forward averaged 9.3 PPG and 4.7 RPG in 55 games (16.4 MPG) during his de facto rookie season in 2019/20.

While those numbers don’t jump off the page, Porter’s upside is considerable and he’s viewed as a potential offensive star. Still, it’s not clear how enthusiastic the Rockets would be about a deal built around him — or how many other assets the Nuggets would be willing to include in such an offer. Houston has reportedly been seeking a return that features an All-Star-caliber young player, along with several other assets (young players or draft picks).

[RELATED: Tension Between Harden, Rockets Teammates?]

Denver hasn’t been mentioned as one of Harden’s preferred landing spots, but a report last week indicated that the Rockets had expanded trade talks beyond those teams on his wish list. Presumably, the Nuggets were one of those teams, though it’s unclear if the two sides remain in touch or have engaged in anything beyond exploratory discussions.

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52 thoughts on “Nuggets Won’t Trade Murray In Potential Harden Deal

  1. goastros123

    Nor should they. Winning two straight playoffs series while down 3-1 in both series is special. Nuggets have a bright future.

  2. Tatsumaki

    Mpj, bol bol, monte morris plus additional salary to fit hardens and 3 first rounders and 2 picks swaps

  3. Codeeg

    harden should fetch a murray and a MPJ. I’m not saying that’s what they’ll get as a return, but if they can’t get that then they should just keep harden for the 3 years left on his contract and let him earn that worth without bringing his value down. the rockets just need to build around harden in a way thatll actually win in the postseason .

    • whoneedsfacts

      Two-year, it it’s culture crushing. Also what good does it do, they can’t win a chip, he’s getting older, their best days are in the review as it were. Might as well cash in what’s left of his value and atleast leave the casino without going bankrupt.

    • seamaholic

      You’re just thinking of Harden’s production. Now subtract his cost (in all senses of the word, including dollars, defense, and distractions). He ain’t worth anything close to Jamal Murray.

  4. GoLandCrabs

    Of course they won’t. A young star for a diva 8 years older who demands to be pampered in the season….and also gets his teammates traded to cover for his failure.

  5. Simmons>Russ

    Nuggets are better off staying young and keeping MPJ, Bol Bol and Hampton plus their first round picks.

    Heat said no to Rockets, Sixers said no to having Simmons, Nuggets say no to Murray and MPJ.
    Reports come out about lots of arguing and tension at practices with Harden.
    Rockets then have to lower their asking price in order to move Harden quicker.

  6. davethemailman

    If I’m the Nuggets…”HELL NO!!!”. I wouldn’t trade for him at all. Why make the Rockets’ problem your problem?

  7. Of course, the Nuggets aren’t trading Murray. This isn’t NBA 2k. Murray is a foundation piece to what they’ve built to date, you don’t just swap guys like this in and out for a paper upgrade. Silly. They should, however, be open to building a package around MPJ, if Houston is.

  8. JamesT

    I mean, if I was Denver I’d think about it. But based on his speculated market, I think the only thing bordering on that territory for a return is Simmons. Simmons though comes with his own question marks and fit concerns. There seems to be nothing indicating Denver would even ponder moving on from Murray, so therefore he has more value. It’s even sort of silly that it was addressed.

    Report: Lakers unwilling to part with Davis in trade for Harden.

  9. shawn hemp

    Careful rockets. Harden could go the baron davis route and lower his value so much that u get speedy Claxton as a return. Then after u trade him go right back to all-star/all-nba caliber

    • Wow I remember that. Then the Warriors became the We Believe in 2007. Good times. Or should I rather say, good time LOL. Prior to the last six years anything good in Oakland lasted only a year or two.

  10. shawn hemp

    I’d talk to pelicans. Ingram or a package of Lonzo jaxson Hayes Bledsoe and put a dent in their treasure chest of picks and say F’ it. Side note wall Bledsoe and cousins all team mates at UK. All they’d need is Patrick Paterson and they’d have the big 4 from one of the best underachieving college teams of all time

    • Cap & Crunch

      Shawn Ive said all along Pelicans make the best fit-

      I dont think they want to go that route tho after just having a star walk on them –

      But yea, they have the youngins ,picks and cap to make it work-

      Theyd have – Ingram Zion Adams Harden at the end of the day tho and still some pieces to fill out with on the side and not a total depleteion of draft capital….Id be intrigued at least but I think they stick to the youth plan; which also coincides better w both LA teams fizzling out for their prime run

  11. Sillivan

    Jrue Holiday is equal to 2 starters and 5 unprotected picks

    Harden is equal to
    5 unprotected picks and an all star

    Or two unprotected picks from a bad team and a star
    Teams can send an attractive package to third team

    • Appalachian_Outlaw

      No, he’s not worth anywhere close to 5 unprotected picks and an All-Star. He’s a headache to deal with. Look how many teams are walking away after exploring a deal. If some team can get him on the cheap, they will for the talent. No one is going to ridiculously overpay working from a position of strength though. He can only plunk so many teammates in the head with basketballs before Houston has to settle for 2 picks, or a pick and a player.

      • Sillivan

        Holiday is an average starter
        Harden is a top 5 player
        3 unprotected Firsts and 2 swaps are enough
        An 30 year-old all star is okay

        Rockets believe that headache is politics, …

        • seamaholic

          Dude, you need to investigate the whole concept of opportunity cost before you extol the value of a guy who makes $40m+ a year and doesn’t play defense.

        • Appalachian_Outlaw

          Holiday isn’t an average player. It’s been awhile, but he was an all-star. He made all defensive teams recently and (here’s the difference between him and Harden) was named teammate of the year. Harden is the better player physically, but it’s so much easier to integrate Holiday into a team.

          Harden isn’t a top 5 player, either. Right now, would you take Harden over LeBron, Luka, AD, GA or Durant?

        • Regi Green

          The Celtics need to get rid of Danny Ainge,and give you a shot as their gm.

          As a 6er fan,id love that.

      • Cap & Crunch

        I dont think the picks will be the main hold-up, its going to be the young players in the package back –

        A bunch of mid 20 picks even in great bulk doesnt assure you anything if your HOU- You need a couple certified NBA players or you just hold out- For all the Hou is on fire clamor it isnt being talked about enough that they still have some sneaky upside and can do some damage come playoffs as currently constructed

        Using the Mil-Jrue trade as an example moving forward isnt a great bar considering all the side ramifications (Giannis)

  12. HailRodgers12$

    Totally just being a dbag here, but it would be hilarious if they not only traded harden for CP3, but then at least push the lakers to 7 games in the WCF.
    Not so funny for Phoenix though, if they get harden and still miss the playoffs. Well, funny but not funny…

  13. Sillivan

    My Bold statement
    Without Harden Nuggets won’t pass the first round playoffs
    Most teams can beat them even the Blazers Jazz Warriors

    • Cap & Crunch

      Any playoff team in the West will be able to beat any other playoff team in the West this year-

      There was nothing bold in what you said

  14. Sillivan

    Paul George is equal to 2 starters and 5 Firsts
    Westbrook is equal to 4 Firsts and an all star

  15. Sillivan

    Blazers can do
    McCollum Trent and Collins for Harden
    Attached the rest of Firsts

    Sweep the Nuggets
    Back court is good

  16. Sillivan

    Jazz add Bogdanovic
    Blazers add Covington and Nurkic

    Nuggets are in deep trouble come playoffs time
    Grant walked for nothing

  17. phillyballers

    Comparing to past trades you also need to account for how desperate the team was. Bucks had to do something to sway Giannis, and Jrue was the best they could get for the meh they sent out.

    PG13 meant LAC got Kawhi.

    Is anyone really desperate for Harden? Yes he is a Top-10 to Top-5 player. Hes also 31. And you’re trading for 2 years of him, maybe 1.5 bc he can opt out so Age 31, 32 and maybe Age 33. At some point hell regress, and Fat Harden probably isn’t going to age well, and injuries can occur. Pudgy Melo one of the best scorers ever was a role player Age 33, 34, 35 and all his peripheral stats declined (FT, 2P, 3P).

    If you think trading your young All Star caliber player is worth the risks involved with trading for a near end of prime star player, stick to fantasy.

    No Murray, JoJo, Simmons.

    When this gets done I expect something along the lines of 4 1sts, some swaps, a large expiring deal, another filler contract or role player, and 1 young assets.

    • Sillivan

      With Harden
      The picks from the goof teams have little value
      Let’s start with an all star

  18. Lefty_Orioles_Fan

    The Sixers should have drafted Murray instead of the Simmons Clown Show

  19. Sillivan

    Wiseman will be a starting center today

    Warriors can beat Nuggets in playoffs if Wiseman plays like rookie Chris Bosh

    I don’t buy Milsap Harris and Barton things any more

    • HailRodgers12$

      I know its only game 1, but GSW is getting pasted by 30 right now…

  20. Prediction: James Harden will never win a championship. Great offensive scorer. Lousy team player.

    • harden (mvp),wall, and wood

      Great offensive scorer? Talk about the understatement of the century.

      He has averaged 29.6 PPG since joining the Rockets, only two players in NBA history have higher career averages than that (MJ and Chamberlain both about 1/2 PPG higher). Even with the 3 years wasted in OKC he is #10 in NBA history, and will go even higher as his career continues.

      The only two players since Jordan with higher career scoring averages than Harden are LeBron and KD while he gains on both of them every year.

  21. harden (mvp),wall, and wood

    No trade is going to occur without the Rockets getting an A-player in return.

    And on top of that other assets as well. It’s getting less and less likely by the day.

    • Regi Green

      You’re right,the Rockets chances of netting that type of return decreases every day.

      Allen Iverson for Andre Miller & Joe Smith.That’s the type of deal it’ll be in the end.

  22. El Don

    That I might do if I am DEN an MPJ centered trade for Harden… having said that once the dust settles HOU would be the clear winner as MPJ is like 10 years younger & a future All-NBA, meanwhile Harden is on the way out of his prime.
    I really don’t think PHI, MIL or DEN are the teams for Harden, BRK, MIA & BOS are better fits.
    Also I believe NYK or CHI fit him the best, maybe even NOP can fit him perfectly!

    • I'm a starboy not a Dr...

      Y’all keep on saying BKN would be a fit when you know it would not mesh well! Y’all bashed KD for going to the dubbs but now Harden is the “Perfect fit” in Brooklyn??? That’s hilarious to me.

  23. I'm a starboy not a Dr...

    Harris,Barton,Porter Jr for Harden??? Hmm.
    I guess it made more sense to trade for Derozen. At least he would just fit in, drain mod range shots and get guys shots…Harden will take shots away from others and put a stranglehold on the offense. Good luck with that!

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