NBA Rumors: James Harden's Private Plans For Next Season

It has become more and more apparent that the Philadelphia 76ers are likely to hold on to Ben Simmons with the goal of using him to obtain James Harden in the offseason. Bleacher Report explains why Philly president Daryl Morey is holding out such hopes. 

"Word has circulated around the league about James Harden's increased interest in testing the open market this summer," writes Jake Fischer. "In his 13-year career, Harden has never been a free agent. By all accounts, the former MVP has clear intentions to reach unrestricted free agency for the first time."

And it's at that point, this summer, that Morey will make his all-out push to reunite with his former Houston main man, James Harden, this time in Philly, by using Ben Simmons in a sign-and-trade. Of course, there's no way of knowing at this point if the Brooklyn Nets would be willing to facilitate such a deal, but it does sound like Harden is looking for greener pastures. 

Fischer says league sources have told him this: 

Harden has recently informed several confidants—including former teammates and coaches—of his interest in exploring other opportunities outside of Brooklyn this summer.

Harden has apparently been outwardly vocal about his disdain for Kyrie Irving's part-time status. And now with Kevin Durant out for several more weeks, it's Harden or bust for Nets' home games (which the unvaccinated Irving is ineligible to play in). That's a big burden to bear. Even for The Beard.

Fischer also reports that Harden has been unhappy with coach Steve Nash's volatile rotations in crunch time. And on top of all that? "According to multiple sources, Harden has not enjoyed living in Brooklyn," writes Fischer.

To be clear, he is committed to trying to win a championship in Brooklyn this season. But after that?...

Fischer reports that "Harden's apparent openness to joining Embiid and reuniting with Philadelphia president Daryl Morey will loom over the Sixers' trade conversations for Simmons these next three weeks."

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