The James Harden trade saga might come to an end soon, as the LA Clippers — Harden’s preferred trade destination — are “going to great lengths” to improve their offer for the 10-time All-Star, according to a report from The Athletic on Thursday.
“League sources say the Clippers have been talking to several teams about ways to move pick swaps for additional draft capital with the intention of bolstering their offer and getting a deal done,” The Athletic reported.
Harden, 34, signed a two-year, $68.6 million contract with the Sixers in 2022 that included a player option for the 2023-24 season. Harden picked up the $35.6 million option this summer with the intention of forcing a trade to the Clippers but so far, there has been no traction on a deal.
In August, shortly after talks between the Sixers and Clippers reportedly stalled, Harden called Sixers general manager Daryl Morey “a liar” for not honoring his trade request. The NBA fined Harden $100,000 for his comments.
[Related: Emotion vs. Analytics: Why James Harden and Daryl Morey were always destined to implode]
Harden is currently in Fort Collins, Colorado with the Philadelphia 76ers for training camp. Harden practiced with the team on Wednesday despite not showing up for the Sixers’ Media Day on Monday. New Sixers head coach Nick Nurse said that Harden “looked good” in his first practice back with the team.
In 58 appearances for the Sixers last season, Harden averaged 21 points, a league-high 10.7 assists, 6.1 rebounds and 1.2 steals per game. Harden has averaged at least 20 points and 10 assists four times in his career.
The Sixers will open their preseason with a game against the Boston Celtics on Sunday, Oct. 8.
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