New Orleans Pelicans: B/R predicts that the Pels will land James Harden

The New Orleans Pelicans could make a move for James Harden. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
The New Orleans Pelicans could make a move for James Harden. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /

Bleacher Report is predicting that the New Orleans Pelicans will land Houston Rockets’ superstar James Harden via trade

The New Orleans Pelicans are off to a solid start to their 2020-21 NBA season, but that doesn’t mean their roster couldn’t improve. Now, most of us are probably assuming that the Pelicans want to improve their roster by improving their rotation, but Bleacher Report had a different idea.

In a post crafted by their entire NBA staff, Bleacher Report laid out their predictions for the rest of the NBA season. The biggest bombshell in that piece was that the Pelicans would be the team that will land James Harden.

Here’s how they explained it:

"“Rejoining Kevin Durant may make a lot of sense for Harden. But ultimately, it will be the Pelicans with the best offer of young players (Lonzo Ball, Jaxson Hayes, etc.), veterans (one or both of JJ Redick and Eric Bledsoe) and draft considerations. “"

Their argument certainly makes sense. Unlike Harden’s list of preferred destinations, the New Orleans Pelicans can offer the Rockets the best combination of veterans, young players, and draft picks. I’m all with that argument, but should the Pelicans make the move? And would they?

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Re-analyzing a New Orleans Pelicans-James Harden trade

We wrote about a potential James Harden trade a while ago, and the deal we laid out gave the Rockets Lonzo Ball, J.J. Redick, and virtually all of their first-round assets. Now if that’s the deal, great sign me up. Upgrading Lonzo Ball with James Harden would instantly make the Pelicans a title contender.

However, I think the Rockets will want more than just Lonzo Ball. I think they’d probably want Brandon Ingram. If the Rockets would take Ball, they’d probably want Eric Bledsoe and a prospect like Kira Lewis Jr. or Jaxson Hayes as well. In my estimation, those deals just leverage too much of the future, especially any including Ingram.

With that being said, I could see this prediction coming true if the Rockets don’t want to acquiesce to Harden and settle with lower offers from Brooklyn or Philadelphia. Maybe the Rockets’ best offer would be the trade we described with Jaxson Hayes included, and if that’s the case, we’re in business Pelicans fans!

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