6’5” James Harden crossed this $90 million guard so bad that he ended up writing an apology letter to his fans
In March of 2019, James Harden left Hawks’ Kent Bazemore absolutely confused with a nasty combo of handles.
James Harden is one of the most dynamic scorers the league has ever witnessed. Ever since Harden split ways with Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant from the Oklahoma City Thunder, The Beard has seen a huge jump in his offensive abilities. And since then, James has been improving and refining his superstar-level game yearly.
There is virtually no player in the league’s history who has been able to master the deadly step-back move as perfectly as James Harden. And with the combination of his smooth handles, accurate shooting, and strong finishing at the rim, the Philly superstar has racked himself a pretty decorated resume.
Over the course of his 13-year career, the 6-foot-5 sharpshooter has appeared in 10 All-Star Games, been selected for 7 All-NBA teams, won 3 scoring titles, and was even awarded the prestigious MVP trophy after a stellar 2017-2018 campaign. Oh and he achieved this all while averaging 24.9 points, 6.8 assists, and 5.6 rebounds per game on 44.2/36.1/86 shooting splits.
Even the most elite defenders haven’t quite found a way to stop the wrath of James Harden. Unfortunately, Kent Bazemore, who is a pretty capable perimeter defender, fell prey to the southpaw’s incredible handles.
After getting crossed up by James Harden, Kent Bazemore gave an explanation on social media
During an Atlanta Hawks-Houston Rockets clash back in 2019, early in the first quarter, the then-reigning MVP crossed up Bazemore. With an insane combo of handles, Bazemore ended up getting embarrassed after was lost while guarding the Rockets guard.
Here, have a look at the play.
Kent was so embarrassed that he ended up justifying the play on his social media handles. In a note, the $90 million worth guards wrote:
Ok so I feel like you guys want an explanation… It’s always a chess match against James Harden. One of the best iso players the game has ever seen. I use the spin on defense for better recovery. Either that or fall. (I chose the lesser of the two evils). James likes to step back for the three when the ball is in his left hand which is why I moved up the floor after the spin. Had he done that, I would’ve been in position to get a solid contest. Obviously, I guessed wrong and that’s what makes him such a great scorer. He’s patient with the dribble. There are a ton of things i couldve done to put myself in a better position but when dealing with an assassin, they attack when you’re most vulnerable.
Great move bro.
All in all, I’m alive and well. Ready for the Jazz tomorrow.
Kent Bazemore wasn’t the first, and certainly won’t be the last defender to get crossed up by The Beard.