Jeremy Lin: How James Harden Trade Impacts Rockets' New PG

Mike Shiekman@TheRealShiekFeatured ColumnistOctober 28, 2012

Jeremy Lin is no longer a lone star in Houston. The Rockets have traded for Oklahoma City Thunder star James Harden, sending Kevin Martin, Jeremy Lamb and a couple first-round draft picks in exchange.

The trade is detailed below, per a tweet from ESPN's Chris Broussard (h/t Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski):

Source confirms @wojyahoonba that Hou & OKC agree to Harden trade: JH, Cole Aldridge, Daquan Cook, Lazr Hayward 4 KMartin, JLamb, picks

— Chris Broussard (@Chris_Broussard) October 28, 2012

Before the Harden trade, Lin was surrounded by a glut of rookies and complementary players, with a lottery destination in sight barring a magical season. Now with another potential star on board, Lin will have another player to defer to when teams can break down his pick-and-roll abilities.

Beardsanity, anyone?

Harden, last year’s Sixth Man of the Year, has the tools to be a 25-point scorer for Houston. He’s an injection of offense whenever he takes the floor, combining shooting, inside scoring and a high basketball IQ to pair with Lin.

Harden will also be able to spell Lin for a few minutes and play some point guard. He has the handles to take on the 1-spot and presents a big matchup on smaller guards. Coach Kevin McHale will have an easier time giving Lin a breather knowing he has an experienced guard behind him.

Luckily for Lin, the Rockets are planning to keep Harden for a while. They will sign him to the long-term extension that Oklahoma City would not.

The Rockets have been determined to trade for an All-Star player, have him in Harden now, and he'll have a max deal by Wednesday's deadline.

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) October 28, 2012

Now the longtime burden of the Rockets falls on both Lin and Harden. They have a bunch of hardworking young players around them in Chandler Parsons, Omer Asik, Terrence Jones and Royce White.

If one of the latter two becomes a strong complementary player, then the Rockets have a chance to do damage in the Western Conference. The Rockets offense has a chance to be competitive, but it seems that Asik will have to carry the short-term load on defense.

Jeremy Lin got a partner in crime with three days left until the NBA season kicks off. Add the duo of Linsanity and “The Beard” to the list of promising NBA backcourts.

 

Mike Shiekman is a Breaking News Writer for Bleacher Report. Follow NBA news and commentary from him on Twitter @TheRealShiek

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