James Harden repeatedly made it known in recent weeks that he wanted out of Houston.
Though some of his actions and comments could have been portrayed as offensive to those on the Rockets — especially after what he said Tuesday, just a day before he was traded to the Brooklyn Nets in a massive four-team deal — Eric Gordon doesn’t see it that way.
“Knowing him personally, I don’t think he really meant it as far as disrespecting us,” Gordon said Thursday, via ESPN. “That’s just for me. I think he just wanted a different situation. He’s kind of shown that, and he also said it … I don’t think he really meant to really disrespect the players, but he wanted his way out. And he got it.”
Gordon: Rockets have ‘a real direction’ after Harden trade
Harden was traded to the Nets on Thursday in a deal that also included the Cleveland Cavaliers and Indiana Pacers. The Rockets, along with four first-round picks and four first-round pick swaps, acquired Dante Exum, Rodions Kurucs and Victor Oladipo.
The Rockets, who had lost four of their last five before the trade, were clearly a place Harden wanted out of. He essentially said so the day before the trade went down, telling reporters that the team is “just not good enough,” that he has “done everything he can,” but that “it’s something that I don’t think can be fixed.”
While it might not be the result some in the organization may have wanted — Harden still had three seasons left on his massive deal with Houston, which had essentially been building its roster, and culture, around him for years — Gordon knows there are several positives that come out of the deal.
Most importantly, he said, they can move on.
“Obviously, you could tell from the summer and since the season started that he didn’t want to be here,” Gordon said, via ESPN. “For us, I think it just gives us a chance to [have] a real direction. Everyone else on the team can hone in and not worry about his situation. We can just move forward.”
The Houston Rockets, Eric Gordon said on Thursday, can now move forward without James Harden. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
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