James Harden should choose player option and sign shorter-term extension with 76ers, report says

James Harden should choose player option and sign shorter-term extension with 76ers, report says

James Harden’s future with the Philadelphia 76ers is the most pressing issue facing the franchise this offseason. Harden, 32, has a $47 million player option for next season that he could pick up, and he’s also eligible for a monster max extension — either four or five years, depending on what he decides to do. with his option. So, there are a number of ways Harden’s future in Philadelphia could play out financially, but it looks like the two sides will meet in the middle as Harden is expected to pick his player option and then sign a shorter-term deal. with the Sixers, according to Bleacher Report.

The Sixers traded Ben Simmons, Seth Curry, Andre Drummond and a pair of picks to acquire Harden from the Brooklyn Nets in February. He appeared in 21 games for the team during the regular season and played in all 12 playoff games.

From Jake Fischer:

Two weeks into NBA free agency on June 30 at 6 p.m. ET, all signs point to All-Star guard James Harden returning to the Philadelphia 76ers on a shorter-term contract extension. league sources told B/R.

Harden and Sixers executives are aligned on one clear directive, sources said: the franchise’s best opportunity to compete for a championship starring Joel Embiid, as well as Harden’s optimal opportunity to win his first NBA ring, resides with Harden playing in Philadelphia for the foreseeable future. .

Sixers ownership, however, has resisted giving Harden a maximum four-year contract extension beyond his 2022-23 option season, sources told B/R, or five-year deal Harden would be eligible for if he chose to decline his $47.4 million player option for next season. Perhaps signing a two-year extension after his optional season to create a new three-year frame would also give Harden a bigger option for his own career.

After Philadelphia’s season ended, Sixers president of basketball operations Daryl Morey made it clear that the team planned to retain Harden.

“That’s the plan, it’s to get him back. That’s been the plan since the trade,” Morey said by Harder. “Obviously we have to work with his representation and it will be between us to figure out how it works. … He’s an incredibly talented player, just like Joel [Embiid]just like Tobias [Harris]and I’m excited for Doc [Rivers] and his team to have a whole offseason, work with the players and come up with the best plan for the roster.”

After the season, when asked if he would potentially take a pay cut to help the team build the rest of the roster, Harden said: “Whatever it takes to help this team to keep growing and setting ourselves up there with the best of them. … We’re trying to win a championship. That’s the goal. Whatever that looks like.”

Signing Harden to a deal with a shorter team makes sense for the Sixers, as he clearly has gas left in the proverbial tank, and such a move protects them on the road in case his game deteriorates to an extreme level. in the coming season(s). Once Harden’s deal is done and ironed out, the Sixers can continue to build the roster around him and MVP runner-up Embiid.

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