Another NBA season is on the horizon and here we are with another James Harden melodrama. No one should be surprised that Harden has not shown up to the 76ers’ facility this week, as he’s dug into wanting out. Obviously, this isn’t Harden’s first time around this block, as he’s previously forced his way out of Houston and Brooklyn. However, former NBA All-Star Kenyon Martin isn’t letting The Beard off the hook this time.
“If I’m James Harden, I can’t expect them people to give me another five years for $250 million, dog! Could give a f**k what he tells me at the dinner table. If I’m being honest…He tell me that sh*t, I’m leaving that meeting thinkin’ he’s a f**kin’ liar,” Kenyon Martin said on Gil’s Arena.
Whining or Wine-ing? James Harden vs Daryl Morey | Agree to Disagree
While Martin makes a good point about Harden falling for the okie doke from Daryl Morey, he’s attempting to use real-world logic. There’s no way to convince James Harden that he doesn’t deserve the long-term contract he was allegedly promised even at 34, with his best, most productive years behind him.
Once a superstar, always a superstar in some pro athletes’ minds. Harden is still an outstanding player, but expecting a team to commit to that kind of money for a player at his stage, who isn’t named LeBron James or Stephen Curry, is a bit naïve, as Martin says. Of course, if Morey did, in fact, make this promise to Harden, he should try his best to keep his word.
Another factor is that Morey doesn’t have the final word on that type of contract. He’s at the top of the food chain (president of Basketball Operations) in this Philadelphia organization, but he does not own the team. The owner (team governor) always reserves the right to veto any deal. Quite frankly, handing over $50 million annually to Harden, at this point, isn’t winning you a championship.
Gilbert Arenas, aka Agent Zero, disagreed with Martin, but he’s looking at it from the point of view of a star player. It might be hard for him to separate what a player like Harden once was from what he is currently. Factor in Harden’s repeated history of wanting out when things go south; finding a team willing to back up the Brink’s truck to Harden’s door in such a manner will be tough.
However, Harden will eventually get his way in the form of leaving Philly. The writing is on the wall. It’s a matter of where and when. As far as how much, it’s doubtful Harden gets that $250 million bag for all those years, but he’s still making a hefty sum, regardless. The Sixers and Clippers are still trying to get a deal done to send Harden to Los Angeles, but nothing’s official yet.