Originally Posted by Claudius
The question is, is Harden worth a max contract and harming the flexibility of that squad? I think it's somewhat obvious that they're going to end up amenstying Perkins, likely at the end of the summer, but with the new metrics in place, a max contract could really make it difficult for this team to add key pieces every year.
Perry Jones could be a wildcard in this situation. If I'm the Thunder, I'd prefer to get Perry some minutes and see what he can do before I move anybody.
I think your opening question is a good one. But I also think that question might have to be asked about Ibaka's contract, depending on what Perry Jones does this year. If the drop-off in production and impact on the game is not that significant when Perry is playing, Ibaka's contract could be the real dead weight. If Perry Jones plays really well, I think they might keep Perkins longer and look to move Ibaka. You can have Jones and Perkins for the price of Ibaka.
Really, there are a number of things to consider here, including the point you made earlier about Harden bringing back a good "haul". If the "haul" is too good to refuse, then OKC may just have to do it regardless of the frontcourt situation.