Former Sixers player Charles Barkley unleashes his wrath on James Harden in light of the latter’s dismal performance in the playoffs.
Troubles continue to mount for the former MVP James Harden who once again failed to get rid of the choker tag come playoff time. The Beard, who forced himself out of Brooklyn to capitalize on Joel Embiid’s MVP-caliber season in Philly, froze amid the series against the Miami Heat.
Harden was 0-2 in the second half of a potential elimination game against the Heat in Philly. The Sixers guard took 0-shots in the final quarter, failing to step up as Embiid struggled with multiple injuries. The three-time scoring champion had 11-points and 4-turnovers at the end of Game Six.
Entering the off-season, Harden has a $45M player option in the upcoming 2022-23 season. However, the former Rockets superstar has a max extension coming up, which could fetch him $200M in the next four years. Many believe paying Harden that much moolah would be suicidal.
During a recent appearance on the SiriusXM NBA Radio, Former Sixers player and Hall of Famer Charles Barkley didn’t hesitate to drop the truth bomb on why Harden didn’t deserve the max.
“If the Sixers give him that money, that’d kill the franchise for the next 10 to 15 years”: Charles Barkley.
It’s no secret that Charles Barkley doesn’t hesitate to call a spade a spade. The Hall of Famer is no holds barred, even if it means being on live television. Having been drafted by the Philly franchise, The Chuckster has a special place for the Sixers.
Thus it was only a matter of time before Barkley gave his take on The Beard’s debacle in the semi-finals against the Heat. The TNT analyst was never in favor of the trade as Harden isn’t the scoring beast he once was in Houston.
Barkley felt giving Harden a $200M extension was self-destruction as it would waste the next two years of reigning scoring champion Joel Embiid.
“The reason I didn’t like the trade – go back and look, I said ‘I don’t like the trade’ -because of two things: the Sixers only got a two-year window because James is clearly in decline, but if you don’t win this year, I think he’s got an option for $45 million next year, then he can sign that four-year extension for $200 million,” said the Suns MVP.
The Chuckster was in no mood to let off the ten-time All-Star easily.
“The reason I don’t like the trade is I don’t think they’re gonna win the championship in the next two years, and they’re gonna waste two years of Joel Embiid. Now you’ve got the injury which probably screws this season. James got a $45 million option which he’s clearly gonna take and I’m gonna tell you if the Sixers give him that four-year $200 million deal, whoever first of all, I know the owners ain’t gonna let them do that. I just think he’s on a decline and man, the Sixers, they’re gonna regret that trade.”
— SiriusXM NBA Radio (@SiriusXMNBA) May 7, 2022
Well, Barkley does make some valid points, considering the Sixers would not like to lose any opportunity to maximize on Embiid’s one-of-a-kind prime.