FanPost

If OKC never traded James Harden

When James Harden was in Oklahoma City he was their great sixth man. He was a big part of their young core and he had the third highest 3-point percentage in NBA history at the time for a player under 21. With Harden, Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook side by side they looked like they had a big future ahead of them.

That is why it was so shocking when they traded James Harden to Houston for little to nothing.

When everyone heard the news on October 27th, 2012 a chill went through every fan in Oklahoma. Why did Oklahoma City have to trade the Sixth Man of the Year to the Rockets?
That is the big question. Everyone thought, and still thinks, that Oklahoma city really messed up letting go of Harden.

James Harden had a year left on his rookie contract when he was traded by OKC for Kevin Martin, Jeremy Lamb, a 2013 first round pick and a 2013 second round pick. The main reason they traded him was mostly because they couldn't afford to have him because of the luxury tax. Since they couldn't give him a max extension it made sense to trade him before he walked away for nothing in the summer.

The trade ended up being a nightmare because Houston has done good ever since but OKC has not been the same. That is why people nowadays can't help but ask, what if he hadn't been traded?

To state the obvious, Oklahoma City would have most likely become a dynasty. The level of ability they had to fight against other teams and win titles would definitely vary because they would have to learn to play as a team and not selfishly.

The big thing is they were almost all still young and had all of their best years ahead of them, so that leads us to the real question, would they have been able to develop together in OKC?

Harden wouldn't have become who he is today in OKC. Harden's game role flipped completely when he left. Harden likes to be in charge and the big star in Houston and at this point in his career it would actually be funny to see someone try to make him the "star sixth man" again. Since he went to Houston he has gained a lot more confidence and ability and that is something no one can really say for sure that he would have developed at OKC.

I also don't think that Kevin Durant would have thrived as well in that environment as he does with the Warriors because he is the type of guy who needs everything around him to be perfect in order for him to play good too. Ya, he probably would have enjoyed being the star for a while at OKC but after a while it wouldn't have been enough for him.

That is why it is probably inevitable that Kevin Durant would have left to go play with the Warriors either way, because if even one year went bad in OKC he probably would have said goodbye.

So if Kevin Durant hadn't left and went to the Warriors who knows if the Warriors would have ever become the dynasty that they are now. Them never becoming a dynasty would affect not only their team but all of the NBA because nowadays everyone wants to be the stacked 3 pointing team like the Warriors.

When it really comes down to it, the James Harden trade affected a lot more than just OKC.


This post does not necessarily reflect the views of the staff of Welcome to Loud City or SB Nation. However, it was made by one of the members of the Welcome to Loud City community, so there is a large chance the above post is extremely ballin'!