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Does James Harden need proof the most in the Sixers?

When James Harden made a trade request to the Houston Rockets in 2020, the Philadelphia 76ers signed him on the front line. Considering Daryl Morey’s parting ways with the Rockets, Houston seems reluctant to help the former Rockets general manager.

The 76ers had a competitive package to sign Harden, but the Brooklyn Nets won the lottery. However, Harden and the Nets proved they weren’t perfect partner.

More than a year after being traded to Brooklyn, Harden is ready for a change. Again, Morey wanted to raid. Trade discussions between Brooklyn and Philadelphia continued for weeks, but a deal wasn’t finalized until the 2022 trade deadline.

Harden was traded by Philadelphia United to All-Star Ben Simmons, Cescurry, Andre Drummond and multiple draft picks. After joining the 76ers in the final year of their contract, Harden and the 76ers lost in the second round of the playoffs.

While Harden could have entered free agency this offseason, the star guard made it clear that he plans to return to Philadelphia once again to don a Sixers jersey. The ten-time All-Star kept his word, turning down his player option and re-signing to a two-year deal.

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Is the pressure turned on?

Harden wants to turn things around with an improved Sixers team. The star guard turned down a nearly $50 million player option and received roughly $15 million in discounts, helping the Sixers front office.

With training camp approaching, the staff at The Athletic have put together a The roster is under the most pressure this season. For the Sixers, in the eyes of Rich Hofmann at the Games , it was Harden.

“The Sixers added length and shooting from three wings, Some of them Harden played in Houston. They have an MVP candidate (Joel Embiid) who can do enough of the heavy lifting so Harden doesn’t have to play at his previous MVP level to be successful. Ha Den might retort that he has nothing to prove, but the only thing to add to his basketball resume is an NBA champ.”

After Game 2 as a Sixers member, Harden argued that he had nothing to prove in the NBA. The star guard is a ten-time All-Star, multiple-time scoring champion, former MVP, and when his retirement finally arrives, he has a ticket to the Hall of Fame.

Harden didn’t have the pressure to prove anything to anyone arguing about his greatness since he doesn’t have a championship ring.

Philly, however, wants the veteran to turn in a report card next season. The star duo of Harden and Joel Embiid have high expectations for the 2022-2023 season as fans crave a championship after a decades-long vacancy, and Harden faces the challenge of helping to achieve the title. Pressure, believe it or not.

Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated Channel All76ers. You can follow him on Twitter for live updates: @JGrasso_.



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