The Oklahoma City Thunder were unable to pay James Harden what he wanted so they traded him to the Houston Rockets.
Saturday night Harden along with center Cole Aldrich, guard Daequan Cook and forward Lazar Hayward were traded to the Rockets in exchange for guards Kevin Martin and Jeremy Lamb, two first round picks and a second round pick.
Instead of losing the 2011-12 sixth man of the year and a London Olympics gold medalist with Team USA as a restricted free agent after the 2012-13 season, the Thunder made sure they got something back in return for Harden.
"While I never like having to send out quality players like Kevin Martin and Jeremy Lamb, this trade gives us a chance to make an immediate impact on the future of our franchise moving forward," Rockets owner Leslie Alexandersaid in a statement. "James Harden was part of Team USA's gold medal team at the London Olympics and is one of the most skilled shooting guards in the NBA. James, along with the mix of young players we already have in place such as (guard) Jeremy Lin, (forward) Chandler Parsons and (center) Omer Asik give us a very solid group of young, talented players who will form the core of our team."
Thunder general manager Sam Presti said the organization offered Harden several different contracts but when he wasn't willing to accept they had to make a move.
"We wanted to sign James to an extension, but at the end of the day, these situations have to work for all those involved. Our ownership group again showed their commitment to the organization with several significant offers," Presti said in a statement. "We were unable to reach a mutual agreement, and therefore executed a trade that capitalized on the opportunity to bring in a player of Kevin's caliber, a young talent like Jeremy and draft picks, which will be important to our organizational goal of a sustainable team."