Also on the Harden trade, here’s Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com, who says that the Harden trade was a result of the Thunder staying true to their principles: “The Thunder maintain a philosophy that the individual sacrifices for the whole. In this case, that would have meant Harden agreeing to accept less than the maximum amount for a four-year extension, which was $60 million. Reportedly the Thunder’s final offer was in the range of $55 million for four years. Over the past few days, as extension talks reached a climax ahead of the Oct. 31 deadline, sources said, Thunder GM Sam Presti informed Harden that if he was not willing to accept a franchise-favorable contract, such as the kind that Serge Ibaka accepted recently, after other Thunder players had done likewise, then Harden would be traded. This was made clear in discussions with Harden and his agent Rob Pelinka, sources said.”
Daryl Morey: “James is the foundational, franchise type player we have been seeking the past few seasons.”
A bit of a formality, but Kurt Helin of NBCSports.com confirms for us that James Harden will, in fact, sign an extension with the Rockets: “This is not a surprise, there is no way Daryl Morey made the blockbuster trade for James Harden without checking through back channels that he would sign a contract extension there. He will, Harden said on Sunday. A video of Harden’s meeting with the media is posted on the Rockets official Web site. ‘Yes, yes,’ Harden said if he had decided to sign with the Rockets. ‘I’ll let them figure that out with my agent.’ He was asked why that appealed to him. ‘Just to be secure. I feel like I’m in a great position with a great team, a great group of young guys that are willing to work hard.’ ”
The big news in the Harden trade obviously centers around Harden, but what about the Thunder’s end? Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today writes about what Kevin Martin means for the Thunder: “The word “sustainable” is key to Presti’s lexicon. He wants to make sure the Thunder have a team not only for the present, but for the future, too. Martin and Lamb address the present and future. Martin is an efficient scoring threat, and while he is not the all-around threat that Harden is, he gives the Thunder more scoring. Rockets general manager Daryl Morey, a firm believer in advanced statistics, loved Martin’s game. Presti, who also appreciates advanced stats, obviously saw something in Martin’s game.Martin is in the final year of his contract, and it could turn out to be a perfect situation for Martin and the Thunder after this season. Martin is with a title-contending team, and the Thunder likely believe they can re-sign him for a value.”
New @okcthunder guaed Kevin Martin to Y! Sports: "Oh my Gosh! Feels like a dream. Sometimes words can't describe it."
The Delonte West saga in Dallas looks to be coming to a close, reports Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News: “All indications are that Delonte West will be a former Maverick by Monday evening. The Mavericks have to keep Eddy Curry, based on the simple fact that they need a big, healthy body and Curry appears ready to put his best foot forward as a stopgap center. Mark Cuban said before the final exhibition game that he wouldn’t say that West would be automatically jettisoned because he was suspended without pay for being a bad influence on too many young players (also known as conduct detrimental to the team). Signs are that the Mavericks’ staff has convinced Cuban not to try to get cute and salvage West. Sometimes, you have to admit defeat and move on to bigger challenges. And the Mavericks have bigger fish to fry than West.”
I'm hearing that extension talks between Ty Lawson and the Denver Nuggets have stalled. The two sides have until Oct. 31 to reach agreement.