After trading for James Harden at the trade deadline, the 76ers must answer some difficult questions regarding his massive contract extension.
Not only would this keep him on the books through 2026 for roughly $260 million, he’d also become the first player in NBA history to make $60 million annually.
But some are skeptical.
Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated reports that personnel in Philly are “wary” of Harden receiving a quarter billion-dollar deal over the next five years.
“They’re going to give him that contract, I don’t think there’s any doubt about that, but that’s a worry for some people down there,” Mannix said on The Bill Simmons Podcast.
Making matters worse, head coach Doc Rivers called out Harden after his 4-of-15 shooting night in an eight-point loss to the lowly Pistons.
“Well, [the bench] didn’t struggle,” Rivers said. “They didn’t get a lot of shots in their defense. I think during that stretch, it was more James than them.”
Harden’s honeymoon in Philadelphia is over already — or at least it feels that way. In Philly’s last 12 games, they’re 6-6 and Harden’s averaging 21.3 points on 36.4% shooting and 29.8% from three. His 41.4% clip from the field and 33.5% from three this season is the worst since his rookie season in 2009-2010.