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Rockets reportedly trade James Harden to Nets

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Harden will reportedly reunite with former Thunder teammate Kevin Durant

Miami Heat v Oklahoma City Thunder - Game Two Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images

James Harden is reportedly on his way out of Houston and will allegedly join the Brooklyn Nets.

According to ESPN and The Athletic’s Shams Charania, the Houston Rockets have traded Harden as part of a four-team blockbuster deal that involved the Indiana Pacers and the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The trade allegedly happened a day after the Rockets kept Harden out of practice after he made remarks during his postgame interview Tuesday, saying the Rockets weren’t “good enough” to win a championship.

According to Charania, the Nets sent Houston guard Caris LeVert, who was then traded to the Pacers for Victor Oladipo. Brooklyn also traded center Jarrett Allen and forward Taurean Prince to the Cavs, while Houston received guard Dante Exum from Cleveland and forward Rodions Kurucs from Brooklyn.

This obviously affects the Thunder because the team owns the first-round picks of the Rockets in 2024 and 2026 along with swaps in 2021 and 2025.

The 2021 pick swap is top-four protected, which means if the Rockets finish in the top four of the draft order, then OKC won’t get that pick.

Harden being traded to the Nets instead of the 76ers was the best-case scenario for OKC, as the Rockets would not gain a young star in Ben Simmons that could’ve kept the team competitive in the 2020s and the picks OKC has from Philadelphia in the Al Horford trade should not be impacted that much now.

A trio of John Wall, Oladipo, and Christian Wood is bad enough to be a lottery team but good enough to avoid falling in the top four of this upcoming draft.

But there is also the possibility that Oladipo gets flipped before the March 25 trade deadline.