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Report: James Harden Didn't Attend Rockets' Individual Workouts on Thursday

Jenna CiccotelliCorrespondent IIDecember 4, 2020

Houston Rockets' James Harden (13) argues a call during the second half of an NBA conference semifinal playoff basketball game against the Los Angeles Lakers Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)
Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

Houston Rockets guard James Harden didn't appear for the Rockets' individual workouts Thursday, according to Marc Stein of the New York Times.

Rockets coach Stephen Silas said he was "confident" that Harden would arrive in time for the team's first practice Sunday. 

Harden's absence comes amid reports that he's hoping for a trade to the Brooklyn Nets, but ESPN's Tim McMahon noted that the Rockets intend to keep the eight-time All-Star. 

Silas told reporters he hasn't been in contact with Harden: 

"When stuff like this kind of happens where there's a little indecision and stuff going on, I kind of take a step back and allow guys some space. From my perspective, my communication has been, 'I'm giving you space,' and that's kind of where it's been as far as my communication with him. Guys like that need that. They need to figure it out, and they don't need someone banging on them all the time to kind of figure out where they're at and whatnot."

Houston's other star, Russell Westbrook, was similarly disgruntled this offseason. The team dealt him to the Washington Wizards on Wednesday for John Wall, who hasn't played in an NBA game since December 2018. 

Harden, who has paced the NBA in scoring each of the last three seasons, is on the Rockets' books for two more seasons and has a $47.4 million player option for 2022-23. As the team's already without Westbrook, a Harden-less Rockets would leave Wall, P.J. Tucker, DeMarcus Cousins, Eric Gordon and Christian Wood with a tough battle for a playoff spot in a talented Western Conference. 

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