One thing I'll never do is discredit someone's sources. As a person with a total of zero (0) sources, who am I to say if someone doesn't actually have connections. Now, have I heard of John Granato before? Sure haven't. But a quick click to his profile tells me he's a Houston radio guy. Those guys can have sources, you don't know. Plus, he used the word impeccable. When is the last time anyone ever called you impeccable in regards to anything? This isn't just a regular source, it's an impeccable source, that has to mean something.
Sadly, when you look at what has gone on these last few days, it's only logical to be extremely skeptical about any of these "reports". I have no doubt that someone told this guy that exact tweet. I think that part is true. He didn't just make it up. At the same time, the Rockets are doing EVERYTHING they can to bump of their leverage. This is all about bringing in the best package possible. Remember this?
First it was that teams are interested in Harden even if he doesn't want to commit to an extension
A classic leverage play. Think of it as the Rockets being like "we don't have to take your kind of shitty offer, we have options! Tons of options! So many options we don't even know what to do!"
Yeah, OK. Well then 5 minutes later we got this
If you're the Nets, you have to up your offer because Ben Simmons trumps everything in your current package for Harden. A classic leak from the Rockets side to Shams to put that pressure on the Nets. To the point where Daryl Morey had to come out and flat out deny it like 10 minutes later
Well shit, that plan failed! They tried to put the pressure on Morey and he sniffed it out. Well now fast forward to this latest tweet. How do you get the Nets or Sixers to maybe overpay or at the very least offer their best package? You throw in two more contenders, in their same division, who are now the "finalists". I'm pretty sure you throw Danny Ainge's name in a rumor it adds another 2nd round pick to your haul at the very least. I mean this "report" doesn't say they are interested. It says they are the FAVORITES. Obviously from a talent perspective, Jaylen/Siakam are the best of the bunch if the Sixers aren't going to include Simmons. It's so very clearly an attempt to squeeze the most out of the two teams that are actually in on Harden.
As Celtics fans know, it's not just Jaylen and picks. It's more like Jaylen/Smart/filler and picks. I'm just not sure Danny Ainge is ready to gut his team two days before the start of the season for James Harden. I honestly can't see it. If you're the Raptors, shouldn't the plan be to pair Harden AND Siakam? You do that trade and what's left? They'll probably have to include OG as well or some shit.
So while I do think someone told this to that radio guy. It smells like a leverage play to me. Makes sense, you may as well try everything to get as close to a good return as possible if you're the Rockets. Maybe they bite. But I've been through enough rumors with Ainge to know that there's a slim chance he's the goddamn favorite to land James Harden. That would be truly jaw dropping if he did it, but he won't. Then people will kill him for not making the trade even though he was never in the trade to begin with.
THAT is how these things work and is totally more believable.