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James Harden ‘ecstatic’ after reported trade from 76ers to Clippers

A troubled few months for James Harden in Philadelphia appear to be over after the 76ers reportedly agreed to trade him to the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday night.

According to ESPN, the Clippers will receive Harden, PJ Tucker and Filip Petrusev in the deal with the Sixers gaining Marcus Morris, Robert Covington, Nic Batum, KJ Martin, a 2028 unprotected first-round pick, two second-round picks, a 2029 pick swap and another first-round pick that will come through an unspecified third team.

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Harden requested a trade in June, with his preferred destination being his hometown Clippers. When he became dissatisfied with the progress of the trade talks in August he criticized Sixers general manager Daryl Morey during a public event in China.

“[76ers president] Daryl Morey is a liar and I will never be a part of an organization that he’s a part of,” Harden said during the event. “Let me say that again. Daryl Morey is a liar and I will never be a part of an organization that he’s a part of.”

After that, a trade became inevitable and Harden had sat out the Sixers’ three games so far this season. According to ESPN, Harden is “ecstatic” at the deal while the Sixers will look to trade the picks they got from the Clippers for a guard they can play alongside reigning MVP Joel Embiid and Tyrese Maxey.

The 34-year-old Harden will join his former Houston Rockets teammate Russell Westbrook in Los Angeles as well as perennial All-Stars Paul George and Kawhi Leonard. Harden is a 10-time All-Star, a three-time league scoring leader and was NBA MVP in 2018.

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This is the not the first time Harden has forced his way out of a team. He demanded a trade from the Rockets in 2020 and joined the Brooklyn Nets a short while later. The 76ers have also dealt with another high-profile trade request in recent years. In August 2021, former No 1 overall pick Ben Simmons demanded a trade and was eventually sent to the Nets in January 2022.