Trade involving star player James Harden shakes up NBA


Keith Allison from Hanover, MD, USA, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

James Harden goes for a dunk in the Rockets’ game vs. the Wizards Nov. 7, 2016.

Jake Peters, Staff Writer

Wednesday afternoon a trade occurred that is set to affect the whole entire league, and some franchises, for a very long time. The Brooklyn Nets acquired shooting guard James Harden from the Houston Rockets for a huge haul.

In exchange, the Rockets received four first-round picks, four draft swaps, Caris LeVert, Dante Exum, and Rodions Kurucs. One of the first-round picks included was the Cleveland Cavaliers, acquired via the Bucks, in which Cleveland got Jarrett Allen and Taurean Prince in return.

The James Harden era is over in Houston after more than eight years, as the former MVP gets his way and upgrades a contending Nets team. Harden averaged 34.3 points, 6.6 rebounds, and 7.5 assists last season and has been an all-star every full season he has played with the Rockets.

Shortly after, the Rockets expanded the trade to include the Indiana Pacers. The Rockets acquired shooting guard Victor Oladipo in exchange for shooting guard Caris LeVert, as well as a second-round pick. Indiana lands a promising scorer in Caris. Both players are going to be significant pieces for their franchises moving forward.

Brooklyn granted James Harden’s wish to be reunited with Kevin Durant of the Nets. What a haul for the Rockets, but the Nets were determined to get another All-NBA player in his prime — and got him with Harden.

What does this mean for the rest of the NBA? First, it affects the entire East because now there will be a juggernaut team running through it. For how long though is what we don’t know. However, this new Nets team has three all-star caliber players in their prime hungry for a championship. This negatively affects teams like the Celtics and Heat, who were both looking for a rematch in the Eastern Conference Finals.

In the West, the problem isn’t as drastic, but the team that makes it out of the west is going to have a tough matchup in the Finals against the Nets if they make it. However, the Nets look like the clear favorite to take on a team in the west in the finals. LeBron James, beginning his 18th season in the league, is getting closer to retirement every year, and is looking for rings in his last years of playing time. This new transformation of the Nets is going to make it a lot tougher than it was last year, where the Lakers easily won the NBA Finals over the Heat.

As the season continues, watch out for the new-look Nets. They are an experienced team with veteran all-stars who are searching for a championship. This league shake-up of players and picks is going to be fun to watch unfold.

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