The Philadelphia 76ers and guard James Harden are in a messy situation. Harden didn’t play in the 76ers season opener against the Milwaukee Bucks because of his ongoing trade request. The NBA is investigating the 76ers to see if they violated the league’s new player participation policy.
Under the policy, teams must show an approved reason for a star player to miss a national TV game. The 76ers kept Harden in Philadelphia for “a personal matter.” Teams can be fined $100,000 for their first violation with increasing penalties for further violations.
“We’re looking into the facts around James Harden’s availability tonight to determine whether an approved reason exists for his lack of participation,” NBA spokesman Mike Bass said in a statement.
With all the drama going on with, Harden what should the 76ers do with Harden? They should trade him. Harden wants to go to the Los Angeles Clippers. However, the Clippers have halted negotiations as they want to evaluate their team around Paul George and Kawhi Leonard. So where should Harden go?
The Chicago Bulls appear to be the favorites to get Harden if he isn’t traded to the Clippers, according to Bovada on Twitter. Who from the Bulls would be part of the Harden trade? Former All-Star Zach LaVine has been part of trade rumors for the last two years. LaVine would probably be the player that goes. While Harden would give the Bulls a star player, he wouldn’t be a good fit for the Bulls because he wouldn’t fill the needs that the Bulls have. Adding Harden wouldn’t make the Bulls a better team.
ESPN’s Kendrick Perkins thinks Harden should be traded to the Los Angeles Lakers.
That’s not a good idea because the Lakers don't need Harden. The Lakers already have a lot of star players and Harden would sit on the bench and not play if he was traded to the Lakers.
The Miami Heat could be an option for Harden. Harden could help the Heat go to a new level performance-wise. He could also help the Heat take the next step and win a championship instead of just making the Final, which the Heat did last year. Last year the Heat had some players deal with injuries. Harden could be someone that they could rely on when people get injured or can’t play for some other reason.
What would a perspective trade with the Heat look like? The 76ers would send Harden and forward PJ Tucker to the Heat. The Heat have a couple of players that they could send. Players like Tyler Herro, Caleb Martin, Duncan Robinson, and Jaime Jaquez Jr. are players that could be part of a potential trade.
Herro is too good for the Heat to give up. Ideally, the Heat would give the 76ers Robinson and Jaquez Jr. The former Michigan sniper could help the 76ers offensively and while Jaquez Jr. hasn’t shown what he can do yet, but could display his full talents with the 76ers.
Miami might be the best option for Harden. When the 76ers do trade Harden they should send him to South Beach to pair with Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo.