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Ranter X: Why Would the Washington Wizards Turn Down James Harden?

It was a big surprise to see the Oklahoma City Thunder send James Harden to the Houston Rockets right before the start of the 2012-13 season considering it seems to be paying off for both parties. However, it appears there was one team that could have acquired Harden from the Thunder if they really wanted to–the Washington Wizards.

Apparently, the Wizards turned down an offer from the Thunder that would have sent Bradley Beal and Chris Singleton to Oklahoma City. However, Wizards owner Ted Leonsis wasn’t willing to spend around $80 million on the max contract that Harden was seeking–so he turned down the opportunity from the Thunder.

In my mind, this should have been a no brainer for the Wizards considering they haven’t reached the playoffs since the 2007-08 season. Harden took home Sixth Man of the Year Award honors last season and has made a huge impact so far this season with the Rockets as he’s averaging 25 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 5.4 assists per game.

When looking at a team like Washington–there’s a good chance Harden would be an upgrade over their best three players combined.

At this point in the season, the Wizards are the laughing stock of the NBA as they’ve lost three of their first 19 games and have the worst record in the league. There’s no question Harden would have made a major impact on this Washington team and Leonsis better open up his wallet if he wants this organization to be a contenter again anytime over the next couple of years.

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