The staring contest is underway between James Harden and Daryl Morey as the Philadelphia 76ers announced they have ended talks to trade the former MVP. Unhappy with his role and contract offer, Harden requested a trade earlier this offseason, but his desired destination, the LA Clippers, couldn’t come up with a deal sweet enough for Morey’s finicky tastes.
Now, Philly is in a similar situation to a couple years ago when Ben Simmons forced his way out. And by “forced his way out,” I mean sat in street clothes as Morey waited out the Brooklyn Nets. But, yes, by all means, try more midseason roster upheaval.
Sources say Harden has no plans to show up for training camp and, judging by past temper tantrums, even if he did, his effort would be “Let’s just do Uber Eats for dinner” at best. This standoff is going to end poorly for both parties, and I for one can’t wait to revel in the acrimony.
What is Daryl Morey doing?
We know Morey overvalues Harden, and is steadfast in his delusion that the Sixers are going to get a real return for a player who is a hollowed out version of himself. Unlike with Simmons, there is no mystery to Harden — he’ll be 34 before the season starts and is coming off a quintessentially Harden postseason. (Not a good thing.)
At this time I’d like to point out that the Sixers have the reigning MVP, who’s dangerously close to disgruntled, and are choosing to respond with a public tête-à-tête between forlorn lovers. I can’t stress how important this year is, or how enjoyable these last few years of the Process have been, and are going to be.
Philadelphia hired Sam Hinke’s godfather; a general manager who created the Sloan Conference, and is supposedly this ruthless, calculating guy, but can’t quit his ex, and for reasons only known to him, still believes a healthy and motivated Harden can help get Philly to the promised land.
Hate to break it to you, Daryl, but your boy won’t ever be fully healthy at his age, and he was perfectly content sabotaging Houston, and then Brooklyn’s, seasons to get where he wants. Three weeks ago, the Beard was getting trolled by ESPN for stocking up on Bun B’s Trill Burgers in Houston. Not sure how great the return is going to be for a guy more prepared for hibernation than his fourth(?) act.
The only way this pissing match could get any better is if Harden showed up at Morey’s office with a bag of platter of burgers, and proceeded to eat them, without blinking or breaking eye contact, until a deal gets done, or he has renal failure.
More meaningless NFL preseason highlights!
Chicago Bears quarterback Justin Fields completed all three of his passes, two of which for long touchdowns, in a 23-17 win over the Tennessee Titans on Saturday. The caveat? Neither traveled beyond the line of scrimmage.
Here’s the first to newly acquired receiver DJ Moore:
And the second to running back Khalil Herbert:
While that’s not quite going to calm down detractors of Fields’ passing ability, it’s a start, and that’s all the Bears could hope for.
I’ll leave you with Dallas Cowboys’ rookie running back (and Darren Sproles cosplayer) Deuce Vaughn displaying some burst.
With the Boys saying they don’t want to overwork Tony Pollard, and Ronald Jones suspended for the first two games, Vaughn should get a look. I’m not saying draft him, but don’t hesitate to grab him off waivers if he shows potential early.