Clippers land James Harden in blockbuster 76ers deal

The LA Clippers acquired 10-time All-Star guard James Harden in a blockbuster trade with the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night, sources told ESPN.

The 76ers sent Harden, P.J. Tucker and Filip Petrusev to the Clippers for Marcus MorrisRobert CovingtonNic Batum, KJ Martin, a 2028 unprotected first-round pick, two second-round picks, a 2029 pick swap and an additional first-round pick that’ll be routed from a third team, sources told ESPN.

The Clippers and a third team were still finalizing those details late Monday night, sources said.

The Sixers are waiving veteran guard Danny Green to create the roster space for the trade, sources said.

The Clippers landed Harden to partner with All-Star forwards Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, as well as guard Russell Westbrook, who played with Harden on the Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets. The Clippers and Sixers have been discussing a Harden trade since July, and finally completed an agreement in the late hours of Monday night.

The Clippers and 76ers began talking again on a trade over the weekend as it became increasingly untenable for Harden to be incorporated back into the Sixers’ lineup, sources said.

The Sixers had wanted to get two first-round picks out of a Harden trade, and believe that those assets — coupled with the second-round picks and a pick swap — give them a chance to pursue another high-level guard in a trade to partner with MVP Joel Embiid and Tyrese Maxey this season.

Harden is “ecstatic” to be going to the Clippers and is hoping to fly to Los Angeles as soon as possible, sources close to him told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne. There’s a chance he is in attendance Tuesday night for the Clippers’ home game against the Orlando Magic.

Harden, 34, requested a trade out of Philadelphia in June when he opted into his $35.6 million player option for the 2023-24 season. During a promotional appearance in China in August, he called 76ers president of basketball operations Daryl Morey “a liar” multiple times, and acknowledged earlier this month upon rejoining the team that their relationship was irreparable.

Harden had yet to play for Philadelphia this season, though he was on the bench with his teammates during Sunday’s game, wearing jeans and a green hoodie, after participating in the 76ers’ pregame walkthrough and video session. He was expected to take part in Tuesday’s practice at the team’s Camden, New Jersey, facility.

Harden, who grew up in Southern California and starred at Artesia High School in Lakewood, had expressed a desire to be traded to the Clippers.

Harden has been one of the league’s top players for the past decade, winning three scoring titles and the 2018 league MVP award. He led the league in assists last season.

The 76ers (2-1) next play Thursday against the Raptors, while the Clippers (2-1) host the Magic on Tuesday before facing the Lakers on Wednesday.

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