James Harden Declares Sixers Relationship "Beyond Repair"

Harden appears done with the City of Brotherly Love.

BYBen Mock
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James Harden China Tour In Shanghai

Any chance of a happy ending for James Harden and the Philadelphia 76ers died this week. The Sixers announced that they were ending trade talks on Harden and instead turning their attention to the 2023-24 season. Harden exercised his one-year player option with the team earlier in the offseason with the expectation that he would be traded. Furthermore, he had told the team that the only destination he had in mind was the LA Clippers. However, trade talks never progressed very far and were officially shut down on August 14.

Harden, who recently returned from a promotional tour of China, immediately hit back at the reports. "Daryl Morey is a liar, and I will never be a part of an organization that he's a part of," Harden said Monday. "Let me say that again: Daryl Morey is a liar, and I will never be a part of an organization that he's a part of." Now Harden has gone a step further, making a definitive claim of where his relationship with the team now lies.

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Harden Done With The Sixers

"I think so," Harden said when asked by KHOU 11 in Houston whether his relationship with the Sixers was "beyond repair". "I've been patient all summer. For me, it's just focus on what I can control and getting ready for this season." While the Sixers reported last week that they intend to bring Harden to training camp next month. However, it's unclear how that will play out and if Harden will even comply. Harden has previously adopted chaotic and disruptive tactics while trying to force trades with previous teams. Before being traded to the Sixers by the Nets, Harden began a practice of taking a string of unauthorized trips away from the team.

The Sixers didn't do a whole lot in the offseason. Their biggest additions were veteran depth pieces in Patrick Beverley and Mo Bamba. It's clear that they were banking on another season of the team being anchored by Joel Embiid and Harden. This comes as new head coach Nick Nurse takes the reins at the Wells Fargo Center. However, with Harden clearly done with the team, they now have a pretty big hole in their starting lineup. Despite their early playoff exit, Harden was the league leader in assists last season. As reported earlier this week, the Sixers begin their season against the Bucks.

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About The Author
Benjamin Mock (they/them) is a sports and culture writer working out of Philadelphia. Previously writing for the likes of Fixture, Dexerto, Fragster, and Jaxon, Ben has dedicated themselves to engaging and accessible articles about sports, esports, and internet culture. With a love for the weirder stories, you never quite know what to expect from their work.