Taking A Leap Of Faith, As Depicted By James Harden & Daryl Morey

Basketball, J. Tinsley — By on February 25, 2013 at 12:01 am

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Change comes about in two ways. Either it’s forced upon you, or you force it.

In the NBA this season, there’ve been a host of changes, as there are every year. The NBA is a makeover league. One predicated on who can look the prettiest, who can make the biggest splash, who can outdo the next person since we are dealing with a team sport marketed by individuals (which has helped spawn it into a multibillion-dollar, international conglomerate). More than any other league in American sports, the NBA is a dick-measuring contest. So yeah, changes are fruitful and occasionally prosperous.

Maybe more than any team in basketball, change has become the calling card for the Houston Rockets. It’s been forced upon them, and they forced it. And it’s made them better as a result. Hear me out. 

J. Tinsley

@JustinTinsley is stuck halfway between a dream and reality. The plan? To make that dream a reality.

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    8 Comments

  • Kenny says:

    I am still disgusted about this trade. As you know, James Harden is one of my favorite players in the League and when OKC drafted him, even before he played a second, I knew it was perfect for him and OKC. He was the man at Arizona State, but they hadn’t won anything. Now he was able to be a complementary piece on a young team and he embraced it.

    There’s no way, absolutely no way, that I’ll be okay thinking that Presti had to break this team up. That implies that I am unable to be forward-thinking by already having my mind made up about the present and the future, but that’s how strong I feel about this here. Also, there’s no way that I believe that Harden WAS NOT going to re-up. He woulda done so; the chemistry was that good, they were winning, the formula was organic and when it’s all said and done, I truly think he would have left money on the table to remain there.

    Even now, as much as I love seeing him do his thing in Houston, there’s more than a tinge of sadness anytime I think of what should have been, as opposed to what we’re seeing now.

    You heard it from me: OKC will rue the day they traded James Harden. They will not win an NBA championship anytime soon.

    • You are really gonna say Harden was gonna accept less money & could have stayed but Presti wouldn’t do that? I find that hard to believe for the reasons you stated … Harden was a perfect fit in OKC. I have to think he wasn’t going to accept less just to stick around.

      I have to admit though, I was not pleased with the trade and thought it was a team that was so close breaking up the band to a degree. However, if you have to pick only three of the four, Harden was the most expendable. The team can’t have zero big guys.

      Still, I’m with you Kenny, OKC is probably going to wish they never traded Harden and at least gave it one more go-round before having to make the franchise-altering decisions.

      Great piece, Mr. Tinsley.

  • J. Tinsley says:

    Kenny. Has. Spoken.

    To add to that, Harden obviously wanted to stay in OKC, he just wanted to get his money which you can’t be mad at whatsoever. Regardless, Harden’s situation is a perfect example of how you may not be ready for change, but you’ve got to embrace it and make the most of it anyway.

    Lord know I’m trying to convince myself of the same thing right now.

  • Brando says:

    That Saturday night in October when James Harden became a Rocket pretty much changed the Western Conference.

    For my Rockets, it finally meant that Dork Elvis had been putting tiny eggs in baskets for one giant payoff and swung hard as hell. Nobody, and I mean NOBODY had any idea he was trading for Harden, even more than the Robinson deal he just landed a few weeks ago.

    Here’s what’s scary to think as a Rockets fan. For three years we’ve had to sit back and wonder what if T-Mac & Yao’s bodies never broke down at the same damn time, if Kevin Martin would amount to anything really outside of a guy with an awkward FT motion and a tenacity to get to the line. We were all skeptical of Harden and I told this to Ed the moment it happened, we might be looking at the moment Oklahoma City basically shot itself in the foot to win THIS year.

    Even crazier? Only LeBron James is having a better February than James Harden from the floor. He’ll win West Player of the Month and the Rockets will no doubt crawl to the 6th seed at best, 8th at worst.

    As far as OKC is concerned, there are stats that tell us they’re better this year than last and that’s fine but from an eye test standpoint, something is off. KD is becoming more and more demonstrative whenever things go wrong and Harden was the guy who off set Russy’s “Tupac on the Menace II Society set” moments. Now who’s that guy? Martin? Nope. Jeremy Lamb’s still a little raw and trust me – this was as best as Presti could have gotten dealing Harden instead of letting him flat out walk at the end of the season.

    Somehow Daryl Morey flipped an entire roster (sans Chandler Parsons ironically) into a legit playoff contender with enough cap space to sign TWO max players this offseason. He wants Dwight, bad.

    Lin + Harden + Dwight in Houston? Possible.

  • A Poet Named BStuc says:

    Great sombering article about my 2nd fav. team after my Bulls. In your Death Row analogy, would Kevin Martin be Danny Boy?

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