All the debate about James Harden potential trade and the Sixers position along with Harden's ONE chosen destination has become an issue that is easy to simplify.
Ty Lue Reacts to 76ers Wanting Starting Guard in James Harden Trade (msn.com)
LA Clippers head coach Ty Lue revealed his starting lineup on Friday, telling reporters that Terance Mann will be the 5th starter alongside Russell Westbrook, Paul George, Kawhi Leonard, and Ivica Zubac. This update from Lue came one day after he spoke on the trade rumors surrounding Mann, and the reports that the 76ers want him included in any James Harden trade.
So it's clear and simple, Harden looks at the all the teams in the NBA and only wants the Clippers.
The Clippers look at Harden and don't see him as worth even a starting position on their roster.
To make that point even more decisive Coach Ty Lue has publicly put it out that he view Terance Mann as a better player for their team than James Harden. Period, end of story and according to Daryl Morey end of negotiations.
"Morey, those people say, expressed his disbelief and accused the Clippers of being "unserious" about getting a deal done. He even quipped that they should just trade Clippers star Paul George for Harden if they were so determined to keep all of their lesser assets — a request that was immediately denied."
Morey can't believe that Harden who just last season led the league in assists is not even seen as a starter for the Clippers. I'm sure Harden must find this harden to believe as well. No wonder The Beard's pride and ego are so hurt right now. Its evidently not just Philly in the NBA that doesn't evaluate James any longer the same way he sees himself.
I wonder if James considers that maybe its not just his skill but his history of now having become an aging star that may be almost unmanageable by an NBA franchise and uncoachable by an NBA coach.
Compared to Terance Mann who has nowhere near Harden's level of achievement in the league, Mann can be seen as a perfect role player for a coach. His history is a guy willing to play hard on both ends of the floor all the time and excel in whatever role the teams gives him. Its starts to make sense why the Clipper have told the Sixers to move on if they expect any of their starter quality players to be included in a trade for James Harden.
"We love T-Mann, and T-Mann is gonna be here. So we’re not worried about what they’re saying outside, all the speculations. It’s a good thing to be wanted," Lue said before Thursday night's game.
With Mann's role fluctuating all of last season, the versatile guard spent time both in the starting lineup and out of the rotation entirely. Because of this, Lue's comments on Thursday were met with some skepticism, but the Clippers head coach sent a strong message with his starting lineup decision on Friday.
Less than 24 hours after his comments on Mann and his value, Lue officially named him the team's 5th starter next to Westbrook, George, Leonard, and Zubac. It's a decision that Lue had been keeping secret until the preseason ended, but one he likely made before the preseason even began.
Harden claims at some point he actually had the goal of retiring in Philly as a Sixer but that Philly's front office (i.e. Daryl Morey) didn't have that their plans. What that really means is not that Philly wouldn't want him to retire as a Sixer but that Philly wouldn't give him the long term years and money he demands. Harden also hasn't found any other team willing to pay that money which is why he opted in to another year with the Sixers.
Truth is Harden can't evidently get the long-term deal in terms of role and money that he wants in Philly and he feels spurned over that. Its too bad because it does remind me a lot of Sixer great Allen Iverson who once he aged past his prime athleticism couldn't bring himself to become good role player in his last few NBA years.
Stars like Carmelo Anthony were able to eventually move from prime star to become good role players late in their careers but some guy's egos just won't allow a realistic view of their current value to enter as they age.
James still has very good skill and value but thinks he thinks his value is still so high that he should be able to choose any team he wants and get max year and max .
The Clippers have moved Harden into the friend zone. They may like him, maybe, but they definitely don't have a ring for his finger.
Maybe Harden and his agency team (does Harden even have a real agency right now?) should reevaluate their potential trade destinations in the NBA because it looks the one James loves doesn't love him.