HoopsHype James Harden rumors

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February 18, 2015 Updates

Were the Thunder being loyal to Durant and his teammates when they traded James Harden, two and a half years ago, breaking up the best young core in the league in order to save a few luxury-tax dollars? Has the team ever really given Durant what he needs to win? Durant has been asked this question so many times he may not realize that he's begun answering it honestly. "Players are paid to do their jobs, no matter who's on the court. And as superstars, you gotta lead what you have. You gotta make them better. Some players might be better than others. Some teams might be better than others. You gotta do your job, and you gotta trust that the front office is going to do their job. It's hard, though. You know what I'm saying? Because it's like, shit, I want win. Obviously our players aren't as good as, you know, than they were before. But you have to figure it out." GQ.com

February 17, 2015 Updates
February 16, 2015 Updates
February 15, 2015 Updates

“That’s my right hand man,” Harden said of Durant. “I’ve learned so much from him, he’s going through a tough time right now, battling all these injuries, but he’s a strong-minded person; he’s going to battle through it, fight through it. I just try to send him text messages here and there to give him motivation and courage, so when he gets back on the court he’ll be 100 percent. Obviously [then] he gets back on the court and scores 40 points and only misses five shots – that’s really unheard of.” Basketball Insiders

February 14, 2015 Updates
February 13, 2015 Updates

"You guys vote on the MVP and I think MVP is a lot about narratives and what may happen during that time," Durant said when asked about the difference between a great season and a player having an MVP-type season. "There's a lot of guys that play extremely well for years and years and just starting to get MVP consideration. But I think that consistent play sometimes gets a little boring to people but if you look at a guy like James Harden, he's been doing it for three years, same things and people start to act like it's new. Steph Curry has been doing the same thing for three years and I guess the narrative (is) around their team but what he's been doing is new to everybody," Durant continued. "Once you guys really watch games and realize what these guys have been doing consistently for years, it's nothing new. It's all the same. I guess the hype around it is a little different so... of course everybody gets better but if you stay consistent in what you do it's not like they came out of nowhere." ESPN.com

Nobody wants to lose a player such as Dragic, especially in exchange for a first-round pick. But if you saw James Harden dominate down the stretch Tuesday, you know exactly what this team needs most. And the reason the Suns don't have Harden in their organization is because they didn't have assets ready to move when the former Arizona State star hit the trade market. "We tried like heck to get him," Babby said. "I was on the phone with (Oklahoma City GM) Sam Presti every single day. But going through that experience led me to believe we have to do what we're doing now, garnering assets and players that will be attractive to others." Arizona Republic

While Morey was especially incensed by Barkley’s criticism of his methods and the 36-17 Rockets’ team defense, Houston’s star guard told For The Win he doesn’t pay attention to such critiques. “I didn’t know anything about that,” Harden, who is the newest athlete endorser of elastic sports tape KT Tape, said Wednesday. “Things like that, I’m not worried about it. That can get me sidetracked on what I need to do in my job. If I worry about those things, I wouldn’t be doing my job. I worry about what I can control and focus on my team and trying to win basketball games.” For The Win

February 12, 2015 Updates
February 11, 2015 Updates
February 10, 2015 Updates

James Harden has another event for All-Star weekend. Harden and fellow All-Stars Klay Thompson and DeMarcus Cousins are among the players to compete in the NBA’s first fashion show. Produced by LeBron James’ Springhill Production Company, the one-hour “NBA All-Star All-Style” will be taped Friday night inside New York’s Hammerstein Theater and air Saturday at 5:30 p.m. on TNT. Houston Chronicle

February 5, 2015 Updates
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February 1, 2015 Updates

Harden leads the NBA in scoring at 27.0 points per game because of his ability to draw fouls and the craftiness of his dribble drives. It’s difficult to get a clean block and he is physical enough to draw contact. After a rough 2012 NBA Finals with the Thunder (12.4 ppg, 37.5 percent shooting), Harden has turned himself into a nearly unstoppable force in Houston. “He knows how to draw fouls. In our league the rules are set up that you really can’t touch guys in the perimeter, and James is playing downhill a lot,” McHale said. “He’s very strong. He’s got really strong hands and he keeps them in front of him and you go and try to take it from him, and it’s very tempting, and everybody reaches in and grabs his arm and he shoots free throws. Knowing how to get fouled is an art and it’s really a hard art to teach.” Boston Globe

Smith considers himself misunderstood. “Maybe because I really don’t talk as much as people want me to or I’m not a social media junkie,” Smith said. “I kind of stay to myself and stay reserved to regular things in life like family and concerning myself with the people I love and surround myself with.” Said Harden, “He’s done a great job. He’s been a leader. Obviously he has a different role and that’s coming off the bench. He’s very vocal. He’s playing well. All he wants to do is win, everybody on this team has that same mind-set. It kind of makes it easier for each other.” Boston Globe

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