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The latest NBA off-season stunner dropped on what was supposed to be a quiet Thursday sports night during baseball’s All-Star break (only one game, between the Houston Astros and the Texas Rangers, was on the schedule. Who won? Who cares?) ESPN’s Adrian Wojranowski broke the news that 2017 NBA MVP Russell Westbrook, of the Oklahoma City Thunder, was being traded to the Houston Rockets, where he’ll pair up with 2018 NBA MVP James Harden to form the latest NBA super-team, in Texas.
This summer’s free agency has created four new NBA power tandems, at least on paper: Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving, lately of the Golden State Warriors and Boston Celtics, respectively, joined forces on the Brooklyn Nets. (Though Brooklyn will have to exercise some slight patience: Durant, who injured his Achilles tendon in the NBA Finals, likely won’t play next season.) Anthony Davis, the game-changing big man from the New Orleans Pelicans, finally forced his way to the Los Angles Lakers via trade: He and LeBron James will strive to return the Lakers, who’ve become a case study in mismanagement, to championship glory.
NBA Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard ditched Toronto for Southern California. He signed with the Los Angeles Clippers, who also acquired Paul George, an MVP finalist this past season, in a trade to give Leonard his running mate. And now the Rockets, with Westbrook and Harden. Not too long ago, the teams like the Boston Celtics (Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce), the Miami Heat (LeBron James, Dwayne Wade, Chris Bosh) and the Golden State Warriors (Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thomp