Sure, Harden was still capable of giving you 20 points and 10 assists per night, but the dominant scorer we witnessed during his time with the Houston Rockets seemed like a distant memory.
However, when speaking to Yahoo Sport’s Chris Haynes during a recent interview, Harden made sure to touch upon his recent ‘struggles’ and was clear that he intends to rediscover his best form in the coming season.
“I wasn’t right last season and I still almost averaged a triple-double. If anybody else had those numbers, we’d be talking about them getting the max. People were used to seeing me averaging 40, 30 points, and so they viewed it as a down year. I was in Philadelphia for a couple of months and I had to learn on the fly. That’s just what it was. I’m in a good space physically and mentally right now, and I’m just looking forward to next season,” Harden said during the July 18 interview.
James Harden responds to those saying he had a ‘down year’ 👁 pic.twitter.com/bgrj7z5qMx
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) July 18, 2022
Despite having what was considered to be a down year, Harden still finished his first season in Philadelphia averaging 21 points, 10.5 assists, and 7.1 rebounds per game over 21 regular-season games. He then followed that up by averaging 18.6 points, 8.6 assists, and 5.7 rebounds per game during the playoffs.
Harden Taking a Paycut
As we entered the off-season, it was widely expected that Harden would be looking to maximize his earning potential, as he starts to approach the final chapters of his career. However, when speaking with Haynes of Yahoo Sports, the California native explained how he instructed the 76ers front office to improve the roster before sitting down at the negotiating table for his new contract.
“I had conversations with Daryl, and it was explained how we could get better and what the market value was for certain players. I told Daryl to improve the roster, sign who we needed to sign, and give me whatever is left over. This is how bad I want to win. I want to …read more