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I feel like it's been forever since we started talking about it… Where will James Harden go? Will he end up staying with the Houston Rockets? Philly? Miami? Brooklyn? And finally, just like that, we have our answer. This past Wednesday, the Rockets finally agreed on a trade that satisfied their needs, they have decided to ship Harden to the Brooklyn nets in a four-team megadeal that incorporates the Indiana Pacers and the Cleveland Cavaliers. So Harden got moved to the Nets. Who else went where? Caris LeVert soon after being traded to the Rockets was sent to Indiana for Victor Oladipo, the Rockets also gained four first-round picks along with four other pick swaps, and to confuse you even more Jarrett Allen and Taurean Prince got moved to Cleveland in this exciting trade.
Now that Harden and Kevin Durant are reunited along with the skill of Kyrie Irving, this automatically puts the Nets in favor to win the Eastern Conference. Obviously, Harden is automatically going to make a team better, he is one of the best shooters we have ever seen, this intensified their status as a championship contender, and Houston isn't looking so bad either.
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Harden made it very clear he wanted out since the start of this season, very recently during an interview, he explained how “We’re just not good enough… I’ve literally done everything I can… It’s something that I don't think can be fixed,” newly joined Rockets John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins definitely had something to say about that as they point out Harden’s lack of effort.
This blockbuster deal has shaken up the league and worried most fans for their own team's sake. But, I also see this trade as a huge risk and let me tell you why. Do you think these three players are automatically gonna click? I personally think that it is going to be slower than a quicker process for these three superstars to figure out how to play together. All three players are used to having the ball in their hands at most times, taking control of games, especially James Harden. Is it possible that they have too much elite offense?
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The Brooklyn Nets now have three of the top ten players in the NBA, which honestly can be unstoppable. We have seen individually what they can do, but can they coexist? All three are phenomenal scorers, but that leads me to question their depth, do they have enough? Joe Harris and Landry Shamet are great shooters that are going to be a large key in spacing the floor, so that shouldn't be an issue. Most also bring up DeAndre Jordan when talking about the Nets, as skilled as he is we have seen him athletically struggle recently, mostly on defense.
On the defensive end, I don't think they are doing enough. On days where their offense doesn't pull up, they have displayed an 0-5 record when scoring fewer than 120 points this season. During this trade, they lost Allen, who was most definitely their best rim protector. Along with Allen, Levert was also a big tool in Brooklyn defense, both players were a point of defensive efficiency then the common player per 100 possessions, per RAPTOR. Harden doesn't have the best defensive reputation, making it a loss for Brooklyn defensively. They will need players such as Jordan to pull up and try to add where they just lost.
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I believe that the people, the viewers, are expecting a lot from this Brooklyn team, that's what makes them so exciting, knowing the potential that they have. They were already in the championship talk with Kyrie and Durant, now that Harden is in the mix most think something that was once championship talk is now definite. I am excited to see how this season plays out with this Brooklyn team, and minorly scared (Go Miami!!). What do you think about this trio? Will they be able to figure it out soon enough? Will they clash? Is it too much star-power?