In a recent revelation, James Harden unveiled that Philadelphia 76ers’ president, Daryl Morey, assured him of a max contract, encouraging him to decline a $47 million player option for the 2022-23 NBA season to create cap space for the team.
Contrary to Harden’s assertion, the Sixers swiftly refuted the claim, with a team source dismissing the notion that a max contract commitment was ever made.
According to Marc Stein’s report on Substack, a Sixers source countered Harden’s statement, emphasizing that no such promise was extended.
Harden, during an interview with Sam Amick of The Athletic, expressed his disappointment with the breakdown of communication between him and Morey during the offseason.
The former MVP highlighted the abrupt shift from past years, where discussions focused on improving the team after playoff exits.
Despite the alleged promise, Harden faced a lack of communication from Morey regarding the max deal, prompting him to assess his options strategically.
Harden opted into his player option for the 2023-24 season but swiftly requested a trade to the Los Angeles Clippers, a wish that was eventually granted after months of uncertainty.
Addressing the strategic nature of his decision, Harden defended his choice to opt in, stating that the teams with financial flexibility did not align with his competitive goals, ultimately leading him to seek a trade.