With the James Harden sweepstakes extending into another week, it seems inevitable that the 8x All-Star will be traded before the end of the month.
Conversations are obviously ongoing and the Nets have long been suspected to be at the top of the list.
But according to Houston radio host John Granato, two new teams have emerged as the frontrunners: the Boston Celtics and Toronto Raptors.
It is clear that the Rockets want some star power in exchange for the Beard and, in that respect, they'd have a tough time doing better than Brown or Siakam, both young stars who are leaders for their teams. Whichever of the two teams is willing to offer more around their star player will likely be the one to land him.
As a 3x Scoring Champ, there is no questioning Harden's impact on offense. In Boston, his pairing with Jayson Tatum and Kemba Walker would be an absolutely scoring powerhouse. While it might tighten Boston's title window (Harden is seven years older than Brown), they'd be right up there with Brooklyn as the favorites to come out of the East.
With the Raptors, their strength would be depth. Surrounding James would be a roster composing of Kyle Lowry, OG Anunoby, Aron Baynes, and Fred VanVleet. They likely wouldn't win a title in 2021, but they could come back the following season with a revamped team. Team President, Masai Ujiri, has certainly shown himself capable of building a contender before.
The 2020-21 season is now just a few days away, so we can expect things to progress quickly for Harden and the Rockets. The only question now is, where will he end up?