Stephen A. Smith Passionately Explains Why It’s Time For The 76ers To Go Trade For James Harden Right Now
If there’s one thing I love about Stephen A. Smith, it’s that he often speaks like a fan, usually avoiding the whole “talking head” moniker where he’s just trying to appease an audience. That’s quite the contrast to people like Max Kellerman, Colin Cowherd and Skip Bayless, who clearly say things to make viewers mad all in the name of debate. I hate fake, man, so let’s try to get that kind of trash out of sports media.
Yep, there’s no denying Stephen A. is passionate about his sports opinions, and, although he F’s things up on occasion — and rightfully gets drilled by the Internet for doing so — at least he believes in what he’s saying while on TV shows like First Take. And one of the more recent instances of that came Thursday morning, when Smith emphatically said that the Philadelphia 76ers need to go make a trade for James Harden right now.
With the 76ers and Rockets having two stars who don’t seem to fit together on the floor — Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid in Philly, and Harden and Russell Westbrook in Houston — Stephen A. Smith doesn’t beat around the bush in giving his reasons why a trade between the teams needs to happen. Take a look below to see more.
“I’m Daryl Morey, the first thing I’m trying to do is get James Harden to become a Philadelphia 76er. Even if it means me trading Ben Simmons.
“Let me say this again, I love me some Ben Simmons. I know how elite defensively he is he’s only 24 years of age 6-foot-10, you know plays defense the way that he does the basketball IQ, the basketball ability.
“I will remind everybody while we sit here and we lament the state of affairs with the Houston Rockets and all of this other stuff, let me remind everybody that for the last three years, James Harden is average, 30, 36, and 34 for the last five years he’s averaged at least 29. We know he got a hand that we know he got a shot. We know he’s a scoring machine he’s a magician.
“Okay, and the opportunity to pair him with somebody like a Joel Embiid… Daryl Morey will trade anything. I mean this this brother makes things happen. I’m just saying it from the Philadelphia 76ers and Daryl Morey is officially named my president of basketball operations. My number one objective is to try to get James Harden in a Philadelphia 76ers uniform.”
Every single thing Stephen A. Smith says there is fact, and it makes too much sense for the 76ers and Rockets to at least engage in conversations about the possibility of a trade centered around Harden and Simmons. If it happens is another story, but it should.
For those wondering why James Harden’s name is even on the chopping block, well, there are a few reasons.
- Houston just hired Stephen Silas, a first-time head coach who’s tasked with trying to compete for an NBA title right now. No pressure.
- There’s a complete culture change with the Rockets, with Mike D’Antoni leaving the bench and GM Daryl Morey exiting the front office for… you guessed it, the Philadelphia 76ers, where he’s reported to sign a deal to oversee the team’s basketball operations.
- With Morey now in Philly, it makes sense to assume that he may be interested in taking hold of the roster and shaping it the way he wants. Why not do business with his old team, right?
- Even before the Morey link to the 76ers, James Harden’s name was being linked to the franchise. The moves in the past month seem to narrow the gap and, possibly, turn this into a reality.
It’s rare for two superstars to be traded in any sport, but the NBA seems to operate a little differently than, say, the NFL or MLB, and often see the league’s biggest names move around annually. And a Simmons-Harden swap would, seemingly, be a win-win for both the 76ers and Rockets, which is always the goal of any trade.
Stephen A. Smith might be onto something here, so we’ll have to wait and see if any or all of this comes to fruition once Morey’s officially hired by the 76ers. It’d be wild to see a future Hall of Famer like Harden on the move, but imagine how lethal Philly would be with the guard alongside Embiid. Uh, yeah, that’s a tasty looking offense.