Apparently the Orlando Magic talked with the Oklahoma City Thunder about a trade involving Dwight Howard for James Harden and Serge Ibaka.
The Thunder was not interested and I don’t blame them.
The first reason why they would not do this is because they would basically be renting Howard for this season. They would have the best Big Three in the league teaming Howard with Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook and would probably win the title this year.
The Thunder organization essentially is turning down as close to a guaranteed championship as possible this season to continuing building what they started. The Thunder’s sights are set higher than just one title.
Oklahoma City has the best record in the Western Conference right now and is right up there for the best record in the NBA so it’s not like they are from winning a title right now anyway.
Harden is having a huge breakout season and is taking the next step toward becoming a perennial All-Star. Ibaka too continues to improve most notably this season leading the NBA in blocked shots per game. Both are also just 22 years old.
I personally feel like Harden is going to emerge as the best shooting guard in the NBA in a few years and pairing that with also possibly the best player in the NBA in Durant alongside Westbrook and Ibaka is way too lucrative to not see it play out.
The trade with the Magic would also have to involve sending Kendrick Perkins and Nazr Mohammed to work.
You can see why the Magic would love to do this. At this point they’re trying to get anything for Howard and this is about the best one out there.
You have to imagine that the Thunder had to think about this at least for a second but what they’re building right now could lead to multiple championships coming to Oklahoma City. If the Thunder can keep their core of Durant-Westbrook-Harden-Ibaka, they’re going to get very comfortable playing in the NBA Finals for years.