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  • lands with the Nets.

  • Obviously, the Rockets get a package, including Victor Oladipo, four first round picks in four first round swaps.

  • Indiana gets Caris Levert, while Cleveland gets Jared Allen and Taurean Prince.

  • Max Kellerman.

  • You are up first.

  • What were your first thoughts when you heard this one down?

  • So many.

  • First, the Nets have to make the finals.

  • They have to make the finals.

  • Let's just assume for a second that Kyrie is on the team and will play for the Nets at some point this season.

  • This is the only Big Three in the MBA.

  • I don't mean they're two great players, and here's the third best player.

  • I mean, Big three.

  • And whenever we've seen a Big three, they at least make the finals.

  • Celtics put together Pierce and Garnett and Andre Allen.

  • They won even when Miami failed.

  • They work.

  • They failed in the finals when they had LeBron and Wade and Bosh.

  • There's no other Big 32 MVPs who are still at M V P level and a third guy in Kyrie Irving, who's more than just in All Star.

  • He has M v p talent and achieve that All Star plus production.

  • You have those three guys.

  • You're supposed to get to the finals at least, and they had to make the deal.

  • You know, earlier I said, No, you don't trade for James Harden.

  • Don't mess this up.

  • But then, dimwit, he was lost for the season.

  • So in fact, kind of counter intuitively as you lost some depth as the Nets lost depth and another ball handler in the backcourt, they actually had to lose more depth in order to get high end talent to compensate.

  • But they did lose depth.

  • They lost Alan.

  • They lost Levert and Houston got Ah Hall, four firsts and four swaps.

  • That's an amazing hall, considering the leverage that Brooklyn had because Harden was out of there.

  • And this is what I mean when I say superstars Stephen A and the league have all the leverage.

  • What do I mean by that?

  • Well, they consign where they want when their deal is up.

  • LeBron KD whomever right and they go from team to team.

  • But because of that, guys like a D say whatever you want about how long it took a d wanted to go to the Lakers.

  • Where do you wind up the Lakers say whatever you want to say about Harden in the ups and downs, he said he wanted to go to Brooklyn.

  • Where do you wind up?

  • Brooklyn?

  • Let this be a lesson to the owners in case they didn't already understand.

  • If you have a superstar in M V P caliber player, he's gonna wind up where he says he wants to go anyway.

  • Make the best deal you can now, finally, Stephen A.

  • They have their work cut out for them.

  • Not only is this not a good defensive team right now, but they're not adding a guy who's like a stalwart defender, you know in the first place.

  • And James Harden, though his defense until this year will throw this out, has improved through the years.

  • And also there's only one ball.

  • And while K D is a super great player, with or without the ball doesn't matter.

  • James Harden and Kyrie Irving both really need and want and like that ball, so they have their work cut out for them.

  • But this team is finals or bust.

  • This year.

  • We'll definitely finals a bust.

  • We agree there.

  • But what I would tell you is as it pertains to what was on my mind when the deal was first announced.

  • Um, never, as James Harden been under more pressure than he is this year.

  • The same could be said for Kyrie Irving, who whose career, I believe, is on the line.

  • Uh, you have people looking at him and wondering whether he's worth the trouble.

  • We know what an ultra talented person he is.

  • He's a superstar talent.

  • We get all of that.

  • But guess what?

  • Right now, he can't play better than me.

  • You know why, Max?

  • Because both of us are not on the court.

  • He's somewhere else other than the Barclays Center on the road with his team.

  • I'm on television.

  • He ain't doing anything on the court.

  • Then I ain't doing because neither one of us air there.

  • Think about that and put that in its proper perspective.

  • It does not matter how great you are if you don't put your greatness on display, and you don't appreciate your greatness to the point where you don't showcase it in the fashion that he is supposed to.

  • In the case of James James Harden, this is the deal.

  • You in Houston, you wanted Dwight Howard.

  • Then you didn't.

  • You want to see p three, then you didn't.

  • You wanted Russell Westbrook.

  • Then you didn't mind your parting ways.

  • Even though y'all are still boys in the end, because Daryl Morey and Mike D'Antoni ended up going to you, decided that you wanted out.

  • They're enough.

  • But since you arrived in Houston and since you've averaged 25 a game every season in your career in Houston, 30 over the last three years, 29 over the last four minimum 28 over the last five minimum.

  • Now you're playing with a dude who's better than you in Kevin Durant, who was a flat out superstar in this game fresh off an Achilles tear 18 months out of action, first eight games, playing this season, averaging 29 a game on 54% shooting.

  • There is no excuse for the Brooklyn Nets not to make it to the NBA Finals.

  • And the likelihood is that if we look at them and they don't make it, it will be because harder than show up figuratively or Kyrie did show up, possibly literally.

  • And so, as a result of that, I thought about the pressure that thes to mount these to have on their shoulders because Kevin Durant is leading the pack.

  • Not only is he a superstar, he is one of the most unselfish superstars we've ever witnessed on the basketball court.

  • This dude was averaging 28 a game, shooting 17 shots a game.

  • Kyrie was averaging 26 shooting 20 a game.

  • So think about that for a second here.

  • And if somebody's gonna sacrifice, who's gonna sacrifice and make sure that Kevin Durant doesn't have to sacrifice any more than he already has.

  • That's the question mark in all of this.

  • Kevin Durant.

  • As long as he goes out there and plays the way that he plays, we're not gonna look at him.

  • We're gonna look at Harden or Kyrie Irving, possibly both, because somebody's gonna have to sacrifice somewhere.

  • Chris Bosch was a third wheel.

  • That sacrifice.

  • Ray Allen was the third wheel that sacrifice.

  • Clay Thompson was a third wheel.

  • Whose sacrifice?

  • Who's gonna be that guy that makes the sacrifice for the Brooklyn Nets here.

  • That's why Kyrie Irving and James Harden are so pivotal in all of this.

  • And that's what I thought about Max That's what first came to my mind when I first learned that this deal was done.

  • Obviously, those thoughts are legit.

  • Onley thing, I would add in terms of who the pressures on.

  • I think there's a lot of focus and Kyrie because he seems to be melting right now.

  • And James Harden because, Okay, James, you want Dwight Howard?

  • You want Russell West?

  • You want Chris Paul?

  • You want Russell Westbrook Now, After a year, it doesn't work out.

  • You wanna go to Brooklyn, you're joining two other superstars.

  • You better win.

  • But in fact, Stephen A think about who the best player on the team is.

  • I think there's actually the most pressure on K d.

  • Strangely, because LeBron, wherever he goes, figures out a way to make it work.

  • He It's not just that he has supernatural passing ability.

  • He knows how to lead a group of guys to the promised land.

  • Whether or not they actually win the championship, he gets them.

  • They're basically every single year.

  • Thanks for watching ESPN on YouTube for live streaming sports and premium content.

lands with the Nets.

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Max reacts to the Rockets trading James Harden to the Nets | First Take

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    林宜悉 posted on 2021/01/14
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