Houston Rockets look back on James Harden trade from Brooklyn Nets getting richer

The NBA Draft Lottery took place on Sunday evening, revealing the order of the top 14 picks in the 2024 NBA Draft. There were some notable changes throughout the lottery – which saw the Atlanta Hawks win the lottery, despite the tenth best odds for the first pick in the draft.

For several reasons, however, this lottery seemed a little less suspenseful than usual – the first being that the narrative around the class was one of the weakest in recent history. For Brooklyn Nets fans, the reason they may not be paying attention is simple. The team had no skin in the game, as the Houston Rockets controlled their first-round pick.

READ MORE: The State of the Nets After the 2024 Draft Ends

In a 2021 trade that saw the Nets acquire James Harden, creating a trio with him, Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, the team sold its future draft capital, giving control of its picks to the Rockets.

On Sunday, Nets fans watching the afternoon drawing might have grimaced to see their pick fall into the top four. With the Rockets in control of the pick, their logo jumped into the top four, although he was quickly tabbed as the No. 3 pick in the draft.

When the Nets initially made the trade, they thought the pick wouldn’t amount to much. They expected to fight for titles for years. A clash of personalities and playing styles with an injury-prone trio, the Nets “super team” quickly disbanded. Finishing No. 11 in the Eastern Conference this season, the Nets could have a top-five pick if they had control of their pick.

Nets fans can talk themselves out of being too sad, though. With the idea that the draft class is weak, they can either feel like they’re not missing out on much or even trade up to the draft if they have a certain prospect they want to target.

READ MORE: NBA Mock Trade: A trade of Mikal Bridges and Julius Randle

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