With the trade deadline approaching in February, speculation about potential moves is rife across the NBA. Superstars like Russell Westbrook and the disgruntled Ben Simmons are among the main names but there have been reports about James Harden potentially leaving the Brooklyn Nets as well. Since he left Houston for Brooklyn, Harden hasn't been able to perform at the same level and the team has underachieved thanks to injuries and other factors off the court.
The latest report from Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report suggests that James Harden is not as happy living in Brooklyn as he was when he was the main man with the Houston Rockets. Considering the rumors regarding the Sixers' interest in acquiring Harden, this is an interesting development with far-reaching implications.
"Harden remains invested in competing for the title in Brooklyn this season, according to multiple sources with knowledge of the situation. But Harden has recently informed several confidants—including former teammates and coaches—of his interest in exploring other opportunities outside of Brooklyn this summer."
"Harden has been vocal to Nets figures and close contacts alike about his frustrations regarding Kyrie Irving's part-time playing status. A recent injury to Kevin Durant has exacerbated the issue, leaving Harden to shoulder the majority of the offensive burden during Brooklyn home games."
"His new city could also be an issue. According to multiple sources, Harden has not enjoyed living in Brooklyn, compared to his days as a central Houston magnate. Outside of the change in climate, the chasm between state taxes in New York versus Texas is quite obvious as well."
Harden is a free agent at the end of the current NBA season, having turned down an extension offer from the Brooklyn Nets. He did say he remains committed to the franchise but another disappointing playoff run could change that. For their part, the Philadelphia 76ers are reportedly also willing to wait till the offseason to trade Ben Simmons, with the hope of luring James Harden to the team to join up with superstar center Joel Embiid.