The Damian Lillard trade demand saga has dragged on for so long that the world has seen a top-75 player, known for his loyalty to the city that drafted him, request a move to one specific team, get slighted, and then eventually held hostage, and, yet, it’s already phased out of the news cycle.
The latest update that the NBA world has gotten on Damian Lillard’s potential trade to the Miami Heat is that the Portland Trail Blazers and General Manager Joe Cronin are unimpressed with Miami’s likely package for him and have considered dragging this out in hopes of convincing Dame to stay alongside the growing youth movement in Portland.
While Dame has essentially fallen out of the public eye due to the lack of updates on the situation, his luster was still able to outshine another future Hall-of-Famer’s trade request in James Harden.
After yet another disappointing early exit in the playoffs, the Philadelphia 76ers have seemingly fallen out of favor with Harden, who was rumored to be considering a return to the Houston Rockets this offseason.
Whether it was his decision or Houston’s, it appears that the speculation surrounding that was only speculation, as the Rockets have spent up all of their available money with big-name signings such as Fred VanVleet and Dillon Brooks.
It’s becoming increasingly clear that Harden and his camp expected him to draw more interest from NBA teams this summer.
— NBACentral (@TheDunkCentral) August 17, 2023
While he wasn’t able to land a new, lucrative, long-term contract like he wanted, he has remained adamant about wanting off of the Sixers. Like Dame, Harden has also demanded a trade to a singular team: the Los Angeles Clippers.
And like Miami, the Clippers have been unwilling to match the price necessary to land their next superstar.
With both sets of trade partners in a standoff, it might make sense for the Miami Heat to pivot their direction from Lillard to Harden. Landing the Beard in his age-34 season is certainly a risk, but his price should be significantly lower than Dame’s.
Adding Harden to the Heat culture might just unlock the few things holding him back from becoming an NBA champion: defensive effort, conditioning, and clutch mentality.
At his best, Harden is every bit as effective as a winning offensive engine as Damian Lillard, and adding his services to a team that just came off of a Final’s appearance should very well create a new juggernaut in the Eastern Conference.
— ESPN (@espn) August 12, 2023
The Inspin simulation model, which simulates every NBA game thousands’ of times, up over 150 units over the last three years. A $100 bettor of our NBA would have netted a profit of $15,000+ and, a $1,000 bettor would have won $150,000+. We offer picks on NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, XFL, PGA Golf and NCAA Basketball and Football. Now is the time to sign-up, get all the picks, and start winning.
| Title: Should the Miami Heat turn their attention from Damian Lillard to James Harden?
| Author: Andy Quach
| Date: Aug 17, 2023