The Philadelphia 76ers have been rocked with James Harden rumors speculating on a potential return to the Houston Rockets this offseason. Could Dwyane Wade – a man who never played for the Sixers – be one of the biggest arguments for Harden to stay?

The reasons for James Harden’s rumored desire to return to H-Town are pretty transparent at this point. But the Sixers star’s self-awareness in not owning a championship ring will forever haunt him and keep him unequivocally ranked behind other all-time shooting guards like D-Wade. That school of thought reportedly holds firm real estate in the former MVP’s mind, according to Yahoo Sports insider Jake Fischer:

“A championship is the one thing Harden’s resume lacks as well. People familiar with Harden’s thinking have long listed Dwyane Wade’s three titles as something Harden sees ahead of his standing on the great guard rankings in NBA history. The rebuilding Rockets aren’t exactly a more established situation for Harden to earn a trophy.”

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The Rockets may offer James Harden comfort and a chance to be the guy again, a couple of things the two stops since his departure clearly weren’t going to match. But at 10-23 with a bottom-three record in the NBA, Houston isn’t exactly harboring a contender in the making right now. Add to that the fact that their franchise cornerstone in Jalen Green figures to be a ball-dominant scorer just like Harden and the roster construction doesn’t appear to be a seamless fit.

But with another potential high lottery pick coming next season (who may or may not be Victor Wembanyama), the team certainly has accumulated talent and draft picks since James Harden’s departure.

That’s similar to LeBron James’ sabbatical from the Cleveland Cavaliers before he came back to a restocked cupboard of assets four years later. A key difference there is that LeBron won two titles during that span with Dwyane Wade. Whether Harden can replicate that success this season with the Sixers and what his future holds remain to be seen.