James Harden returns to Rockets practice amid trade rumors

NBA

James Harden returns to Rockets practice amid trade rumors

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Rockets coach Stephen Silas said he had a “good conversation” with James Harden after the star guard returned to the team amid speculation over his future.

Harden took part in his first practice session Monday after missing the start of training camp following reports the former NBA MVP wants to be traded.

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The 76ers and Nets are reportedly Harden’s most desired destinations despite the Rockets acquiring John Wall in a trade that sent Russell Westbrook to the Wizards.

“You can ask him about his commitment and all that sort of thing. But we had a good conversation,” first-year coach Silas told reporters. “He was locked in. He was asking good questions. He was bringing up good points. We had a good discussion.”

Harden averaged 34.3 points, 7.5 assists and 6.6 rebounds per game last season for the Rockets, who lost in the Western Conference semifinals at Walt Disney World Resort.

“We talked basketball,” Silas said. “I’m a basketball coach and he’s a basketball player. We talked hoop today. As far as his commitment to what we’re doing basketball-wise, he was right there.

“As far as the rumors and all the other stuff I can’t speak to, again, that’s another question you’ll have to ask of him.”

The Rockets open their 2020-21 season against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Dec. 23.