Report: Harden adds Bucks and Heat to list of trade destinations


As the James Harden saga in Houston continues, the former MVP's list of preferred trade destinations reportedly expanded to four teams. 

Harden initially desired to be traded to the Nets or Sixers, but now the Bucks and Heat have been added to his list, according to The Athletic's Shams Charania

Of the four teams, the Bucks may be the most surprising considering Harden's recent history with two-time reigning MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo. 

Antetokounmpo started a feud with Harden after taking Kemba Walker over him in the 2020 NBA All-Star Game draft because Walker is someone who'd pass the ball. Antetokounmpo also detailed his team's offensive strategy in the All-Star Game as "trying to find whoever James Harden was guarding."

Harden later responded to Antetokounmpo's veiled shots at him by saying it takes no skill to do what Antetokounmpo does on the basketball court. 

"I wish I could just run, run and was 7 feet and run and just dunk," Harden said in February. "That takes no skill at all. I’ve got to actually learn how to play basketball and how to have skill."

Giannis vs. Harden became an interesting rivalry in a season that was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. If Harden were to be traded to an Eastern Conference contender, the rivalry would surely take center stage in the conference. It's an entirely different discussion if they were on the same team. 

Despite the pressure Harden's put on the Rockets to trade him, Houston has held steady in their plans to keep the three-time scoring champion and compete in the Western Conference. Harden has two guaranteed years left on his contract with a player option for a third. He turned down a two-year, $103 million extension in mid-November.

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