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Around The Realm: Harden violated league protocols, other Rockets may miss opener as well

We made it one day into the season before the impacts of COVID-19 started disrupting the league.

Welcome to Around the Realm, where we take a look at the news from around the NBA.

James Harden violated NBA protocols

Video emerged of James Harden at a public inddor party, unmasked. The immediate assumption based on Harden's history was that he was at a strip club. Harden took to Instagram to deny being a strip club, and in doing so admitted to having violated NBA protocols.

Harden has since deleted this from Instagram, presumably once someone in his circle pointed out that he just admitted to breaking NBA rules.

Players can be subject to fines or suspensions for violating league protocols, but so far there's been no word from the league regarding the punishment.

Rudy Gobert was made a pariah for his flaunting of COVID rules, but that was at a time when we knew much less about the virus and the NBA was still packing thousands of players into NBA arenas. What Harden is doing is far, far worse.

Also in Houston, several players may have been exposed

Unrelated to Harden, several Rockets players may miss tonight's game as a positive test has resulted in contact tracing.

The Rockets are also without Ben McLemore, who tested positive for COVID and is already away from the team.

We knew COVID would impact the league this season. I don't know if anyone expected such a big impact so early. The Rockets could enter tonight's game with a significant portion of their roster missing. It remains to be seen if the game will even be played, as the NBA has not set specific guidelines on when games would be cancelled.

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ForKingsandCountry
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December 23, 2020 11:03 am

Hey this means the Thunder might get a free win tonight! Tank season in full swing!

RandyBreuersNeckHair
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December 23, 2020 11:09 am

My first thought as well. We can pick up a game on OKC!

Kingsguru21
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December 23, 2020 11:15 am

Yeah but we play the Rox in 6 days FK&C. This doesn’t help Sac if losing is what we’re hoping for next week in Clutch City.

ForKingsandCountry
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December 23, 2020 11:18 am
Reply to  Kingsguru21

Oh shoot you’re right! It will be interesting to see what happens to Harden now going forward if he did knowingly and flagrantly break the league’s Covid protocols. I would have to imagine he’ll be getting suspended. Also, does he ever even suit up for the Rockets in the regular season?

Kingsguru21
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December 23, 2020 11:57 am

I would have to imagine he’ll be getting suspended. 

Good question. I suspect the NBA is debating how tough a line they really want to take with a star in his prime.

Also, does he ever even suit up for the Rockets in the regular season?

Looking doubtful at this point but you never know. I certainly don’t!

ForKingsandCountry
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December 23, 2020 12:00 pm
Reply to  Kingsguru21

I’d have to check but I would have to imagine because this is not his first offense, there will be some sort of suspension coming if he has been found to have violated the protocol. I think he already got fined for the first incident. The one thing I am confident of is that Houston is a mess. As a Kings fan, I think I am an expert on the subject.

Last edited 1 year ago by ForKingsandCountry
Kingsguru21
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December 23, 2020 12:07 pm

 The one thing I am confident of is that Houston is a mess. As a Kings fan I think I am an expert on the subject.

I’m wondering if there’s just Kangz fatigue nationally, or if Houston was just jealous of our stranglehold on unique and one of a kind dysfunction.

Speaking of that, listen to the Woj pod with Monty. It’s interesting to hear how he answers the questions although there isn’t much there (and I expected as much but you never know).

andy_sims
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December 23, 2020 11:25 am

I like Harden, but you just can’t act this way. The main issue is that he knows that no matter how bad his behavior may be, that there will always be a team willing to pay him, because he’s just that damned good. There isn’t a team in the league that wouldn’t trade for him if they liked the deal.

I hope he gets his act together, I really want to see what a Harden/Wall/Cousins combo can do.

RobHessing
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December 23, 2020 1:35 pm

Hey James, you know that there are team rules, league rules, and just plain common sense, right?
comment image

Kingsguru21
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December 23, 2020 2:58 pm
Reply to  RobHessing

Strip clubs > COVID.

Actually, they both suck. So perhaps not. But I’m not James Harden either….

Last edited 1 year ago by Kingsguru21
Murf
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December 23, 2020 2:55 pm

I tend to support players as it comes it comes to empowerment issues. But If I’m the NBA and the message is that this virus is serious, they should bring down the hammer and suspend him and fine a significant amount. As if you don’t then why should players then take the protocols seriously.

If the players association wants to fight the fine and suspension and even if they win, to me the point is that it shows the leagues fans and even critics that this is a serious issue

It has to be the league as if its the team, they will try to spin it as well they are mad that he requested a trade

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