The trade between the Brooklyn Nets and Philadelphia 76ers involving James Harden and Ben Simmons highlighted the trade deadline on February 10.
This blockbuster trade shaped up the title picture in the NBA and shifted the betting odds ahead of the second part of the season. Brooklyn traded Harden and Paul Millsap to the Sixers. In exchange, they received Simmons, guard Seth Curry, center Andre Drummond and a pair of first-round draft picks.
Harden and Simmons were not on the same page with their respective teams. Therefore, this trade seems as the ideal deal for all sides. As the Sixers and Nets are among the title favorites, how did this deal affect sportsbooks?
“Upon news of the trade, we saw the 76ers price shorten in both the NBA Championship and Eastern Conference winner markets. Their championship odds were the most significant move, from an average of +2100 to as short as +650.
As for Brooklyn, they remain the NBA title favorite at many books, but their odds did fade much closer to the pack and just barely ahead of the Golden State Warriors,” Mitch Robson, lead NBA Editor at Sports Betting Dime, told TalkBasket.net.
During his introductory press conference with the Sixers, Harden admitted he was disappointed he couldn’t lead Brooklyn to the championship. At the same time, he made it clear he has his sights set on a title run with Philadelphia.
“My job is to help be the leader, to push guys and get that swagger out of guys every night. Because ultimately that’s’ going to help us get a championship,” he said, via NBA.com.
The multiple time All-Star missed his final four games with the Nets due to a hamstring injury. Even though he practiced with Philadelphia earlier this week, he will make his debut after the All-Star break.
More specifically, Harden will make his first appearance in a Sixers uniform in the road game vs the Minnesota Timberwolves on February 25.
On the other hand, Ben Simmons has no timetable for his debut with the Nets. Simmons has not played at all this season. As a result, he needs time to get ready both physically and mentally.