One of the ways in which the Philadelphia 76ers broke through during the 2017-18 season was by bringing in JJ Redick, whose presence as a sharpshooting threat opened up the floor for Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. For that reason, Bleacher Report’s Zach Buckley floated Indiana Pacers sharpshooter Buddy Hield as a trade option.
“Should the Sixers fail to find a star—or somehow wind up convincing Harden to stay—then an elite shooter like Hield would be a sensible target. Much as JJ Redick once did, Hield could keep the interior open for Embiid by racing around screens, launching movement threes, and demanding constant attention from opposing defenses,” Buckley wrote.
Hield came into the NBA hyped up as a sharpshooter and has more or less lived up to it. Hield is not a star per se, but he is a volume three-point shooter with impressive accuracy. In seven NBA seasons, Hield has shot 40.2% from three on 7.7 three-point attempts a game.
Sadly, Hield has never been to the playoffs, so there’s no way to know if he’d help as Redick did, but Hield has never played beside an MVP player like Joel Embiid, so Hield could very well put up some of his best shooting percentages and point per game average playing beside Embiid.
Ime Udoka Stopped James Harden-Rocket Reunion
Of course, it didn’t turn out that way, and The Ringer’s Bill Simmons revealed that the Rockets opted not to bring Harden back following the hire of Ime Udoka as head coach.
“(Ime) Udoka came in, he got the job at the end of April, and they were like, ‘What about James Harden?’ He said, ‘Yeah we can think about it!’” Simmons explained on the August 20 edition of The Bill Simmons Podcast. “Then when he got the job, he said, ‘I don’t f****** want that guy,’ and they threw their weight in front of it. That’s what happened.
“Harden thought he was going there. He thought he was getting a big contract. That’s why he took less money to help Philly win for a year because he knew he was going to leave. That’s my theory, and I think I’m right. Once that Houston thing got pulled out and Daryl says, ‘We’re going to trade you this summer,’ he looks around, and nobody f****** wants James Harden!”
James Harden ‘on Same Page’ With Clippers Stars: Report
With all the James Harden drama going on, Yahoo Sports’ Vincent Goodwill reported that he has been in touch with the two biggest stars on the Los Angeles Clippers.
“What I’ve heard is that, hey, James has been in conversation with Paul and Kawhi, and they’re all kind of on the same page,” Goodwill said on the August 26 episode of the “Ball Don’t Lie” podcast.
The Clippers waived Eric Gordon this offseason before Harden opted in with the Sixers in hopes of getting traded. There have been no reports that Gordon’s release and Harden’s request are linked, but given Gordon’s production – 11 points a game while shooting 46.3% from the field and 42.3% from three – Harden would replace what Gordon would do on the Clippers and then some.