Suddenly, Sixers Viewed as Most Likely Landing Spot for James Harden

The Philadelphia 76ers have emerged as the "most likely" partner if the Houston Rockets decide to trade James Harden, according to Marc Stein of the New York Times.

Harden is undergoing a series of COVID-19 tests required by the NBA before being allowed to join his teammates. He reportedly continues to seek a trade. The rest of the Rockets will open the preseason Friday at Chicago.

"As the NBA preseason begins tonight Philadelphia ranks as the most likely destination when the Rockets eventually reach the point of trading James Harden," Stein reported. "The Rockets insist (for now) they will not trade Harden. The Sixers insist (for now) they will not trade Ben Simmons."

But both sides could eventually cave, given that new president of basketball operations for the 76ers Daryl Morey spent 13 seasons as general manager of the Rockets. Morey is a big Harden fan.

Morey's Rockets always placed a high value on 3-point shooting, and that's something Simmons cannot do.

Harden has also recently been linked to the Milwaukee Bucks and Miami Heat. The Brooklyn Nets are believed to be on his "wish list" too. But a trade anywhere won't be easy. Not unless a team is willing to send a talent, such as Simmons, back to the Rockets. Maybe the Sixers will indeed get to that point eventually.

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Sam Amico spent 15 years covering the NBA for Sports Illustrated, FOX Sports and, along with a few other spots, and currently runs his own basketball website on the side,