The Philadelphia 76ers and Los Angeles Clippers remain at a standstill with a James Harden trade. Though the two sides have failed to reach an agreement, ESPN’s Zach Lowe explained on the September 5 episode of “The Lowe Post” how they could agree to a deal between each other.
“If the Clippers were to put both (of their tradable) first-round picks in, even without (Terance Mann), I think there’s a two-team deal that exists that the Sixers would do,” Lowe said.
Lowe added that the Sixers hope that Harden will attend training camp despite his wishes in the hopes of getting some value out of him before trading him.
“I don’t think the two teams have been anywhere close to any of that kind of deal, which is why I think the only play I see for the Sixers here is bring him to camp, hope…he plays pretty well, and the Clippers and some other teams with high expectations sputter over their first 20 games and get desperate.”
James Harden Responds to ESPN Article
ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne wrote a story on September 6 detailing the turbulence going on behind the scenes between Harden and Daryl Morey. After the article was published, Harden gave his thoughts on Shelburne’s report on Instagram that same day.
On his Instagram story, Harden wrote, “Y’all gotta chill wit these reports,” with laughing emojis. He then added, “Imma start reporting s***,” with eyes emojis, which was aggregated by The Athletic’s Law Murray via his X account.
On that same day, ESPN shared an excerpt from Shelburne’s article on their Instagram page, revealing that Harden did not take being snubbed from the All-Star game too well, going as far as ignoring Adam Silver when the commissioner tried to tell him that he was a replacement.
“Commissioner Adam Silver was prepared to name James Harden as an injury replacement at the 2023 NBA All-Star Game, sources told Ramona Shelburne. Days went by without Harden’s answer because he was ‘pouting.’ By the time Harden accepted, Silver moved on and named Pascal Siakam.”
Harden responded to this, declaring that his supposed bad reaction to the All-Star Game as “lies,” as aggregated by Liberty Ballers Erin Grugan via her X account.
Clippers Willing to Watch ‘Fire Burn’: Insider
On September 6, ESPN’s Marc Spears reported that the Clippers are not in total desperation mode and are willing to wait out the James Harden saga until the Sixers cave.
“From what I’m being told about the Clippers is they’re not being desperate,” Spears said. “They feel like they’re going to keep watching this fire burn, and at some point, the Sixers could be desperate, and they’re gonna get pennies on the dollar instead of the big demands that Daryl Morey is making.”
Factoring what Lowe had outlined and what Spears had reported, it sounds like a deal would be agreed to by now if the Clippers offered exactly what Lowe mentioned, but clearly, the Clippers believe they can get Harden for less than that. Both sides clearly are depending on the other feeling the pressure more with each passing day before giving in.
Harden’s days with the Sixers are numbered, but when his time is up with the team remains up in the air until a trade becomes officialized.
Matt John covers the Philadelphia 76ers and Boston Celtics for Heavy.com. A Massachusetts native, he has covered the NBA since 2018, with stops at FanSided, Basketball News and Basketball Insiders. More about Matt John
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