Everyone was shocked. I mean, a few people had suggested that maybe James Harden could be traded after the season or maybe closer to the deadline in February, but not before the season. Yet it happened.
Dwyane Wade was shocked like everyone else.
But he doesn’t think the Thunder took much of a step backwards. Here is what he told Brian Windhorst at ESPN’s Heat Index.
“It was shocking but they made the move they felt was right for them,” Dwyane Wade said.
“It shakes up the West a little bit. I think both team got fair value. I’m not a GM or anything but both teams came out pretty good… I’m not one of those guys who fell back too far. They have good depth, Kevin Martin is a pretty good scorer in this league. We’ll see how it shakes out but I still think they’re the best team in the West right now,” Wade added.
Right now, at the start of the season they may be. But as Wade said, we’ll see how this shakes out. It’s kind of the same thing with the Lakers — we have guesses how that is going to work out but we really won’t know until we see it on the course for a while.
LeBron James was a little more tentative.
“I think we all know that James Harden was a big part of their team,” James said. “He was a big part of why they made it to the Finals. They got a couple pieces back that are really good as well. But we don’t know how it changes their team until they actually get out there.”
Whichever teams comes out of the West — Thunder, Lakers or someone else — they are going to have to get through Wade and LeBron to get a title.