Mark D. Smith-US PRESSWIRE
With one year remaining on James Harden's contract, the Oklahoma City have opted to trade him while his value is at its peak, rather than negotiating a deal or paying the luxury tax. He'll head to Houston for Kevin Martin, Jeremy Lamb and picks.
Adrian Wojnarowski has dropped a bombshell on the sports world on Saturday night, relaying the news that the Oklahoma City Thunder have agreed to trade guard James Harden to the Houston Rockets. Harden has one year left on his contract, and the Thunder would have needed to exceed the luxury tax threshold to retain him.
The Rockets send Kevin Martin, Jeremy Lamb and future draft considerations to the Thunder for Harden, sources tell Y! Sports.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) October 28, 2012
Whether or not this turns out to be a good deal for one side or both sides likely depends on exactly what those future draft considerations turn out to be. It's hard to envision a deal that does not send multiple first round picks to Oklahoma City.
It also seems highly unlikely that the Rockets would make this trade without knowing for sure that they would be able to retain Harden's services, and he almost certainly would have commanded a maximum contract in free agency.