|2009 NBA Draft||NBA||Drafted 3rd overall by Oklahoma City.|
|6th July, 2009||NBA||Signed four year, $18,733,857 rookie scale contract with Oklahoma City. Included team options for 2011/12 and 2012/13.|
|25th October, 2010||NBA||Oklahoma City exercised 2011/12 team option.|
|27th June, 2011||NBA||Oklahoma City exercised 2012/13 team option.|
|27th October, 2012||NBA||Traded by Oklahoma City, along with Lazar Hayward, Cole Aldrich and Daequan Cook, to Houston in exchange for Kevin Martin, Jeremy Lamb, two protected 2013 first round picks (#12, 2013, Steven Adams; #21, 2014, Mitch McGary) and a 2013 second round pick (#32, Alex Abrines).|
|31st October, 2012||NBA||Signed a partially guaranteed five year, $78,782,188 extension with Houston.|
|9th July, 2016||NBA||Signed a four year, $117,964,846 extension with Houston. Concurrently re-negotiated 2016/17 salary upwards by $9,756,068 and 2017/18 salary upwards by $10,487,773, which are both included in the $17.55 million figure. Extension included player option for 2019/20 season.|
|7th July, 2017||NBA||Signed a four year, $169,344,000 extension with Houston. Included player option for 2022/23. Concurrently declined 2019/20 player option.|
|2007 - 2009||Arizona State (NCAA)|
|June 2009 - October 2012||Oklahoma City Thunder (NBA)|
|October 2012 - present||Houston Rockets (NBA)|
August 31, 2018
[...] This is a significant departure for a team that, a few years ago, would not pay tax at all. Back in 2012, it was financial pressures like these that cost the Thunder James Harden.
In extension negotiations, the Thunder offered Harden very nearly the maximum salary, yet Harden wanted a full max, and knew he could get it elsewhere. Under threat of signing a maximum offer sheet in free agency next summer, Harden asked to be traded from the team; unwilling to pay the luxury tax, and also seemingly unwilling to use the amnesty clause on then-starting centre Kendrick Perkins to dodge it for Harden, the Thunder traded Harden before losing him, and although the trade package returned yielded Adams, Harden has gone on to be an all-timer. It is impossible to know for sure how much losing Harden has cost Oklahoma City, yet it is self-evidently a lot.
To go from being the team that lost a future MVP over a few million dollars to a team prepared to pay a potential $74 million tax liability for Dennis Schroeder and Jerami Grant is quite jarring. Nevertheless, as easy to cite of a criticism as that is, it is not a fair one. No one should be compelled to make the same mistake as they did once before purely for the sake of consistency; we should all seek to learn from our mistakes, and that starts with not making them again.
Furthermore the franchise's financial position is different. Since that time, the Thunder have experienced changes in their ownership structure, including bringing in new investors with particularly deep pockets. Sam Presti and the front office are empowered to spend more money on the playing roster now not only because of the fallout from the Harden situation, but also because they simply can. There is more money now, and thus more spending power.
The question is, how long for. [...]
June 29, 2018
PG/SG – 6’5, 220lbs - 28 years old - 9 years of experience
A fairly purist school of thought believes that the league’s Most Valuable Player award should by default go to the best player on the best team. This gross oversimplification lacks for nuance and contextual understanding, making it more often a damaging school of thought than anything else; in this instance, however, it looks like it will be exactly right.
James Harden was the best player on the best team in the NBA. The Rockets did not win the title, of course, but slightly better luck may well have seen them do so. And they would only have done so down to the genius of Harden, a man who this season stepped up his game once more.
Slightly adjusting his game to incorporate the arrival of Chris Paul, Harden had to adjust it further in the playoffs when Paul went out with a seriously untimely injury. He became much more of a two-way player, expending a greater defensive energy then the (admittedly well-earned) reputation that proceeds him so often assumes he will, and he truly did carry his team. If only they had been able to make a couple more jump shots as a unit, we would hereby looking at James Harden, NBA champion and reigning MVP.
It matters not whether you know as a defender what James Harden intends to do on any possession. We all know about the between-the-legs three-pointers, the drives to the rim, the flails and appeals to the refs. Doesn't matter. It works. It works to an MVP level. It is a prodigious, Hall of Fame Talent. And although he has yet to win a ring to back this up, he will at least now have won an MVP award.
T’was a good year. Now get him slightly more help and save on those legs.
Player Plan: Five years and $199,765,854 remaining. Seems fair.
June 29, 2017
PG/SG, 6’5, 220lbs, 27 years old, 8 years of experience
The idea he could double his assists total from 2015/16 seemed ludicrously far-fetched. Turns out it wasn't. Harden managed the point guard transition pretty seamlessly, his role to full-time point guard from primary playmaker necessitating subtle but important shifts in his usage, shifts perhaps best evidenced by his career-high 34.2% usage rate. He even tried a bit harder defensively, albeit still with the occasional rest possessions that look so bad on YouTube.
Player Plan: Three years and circa. $91.4 million. The hub of everything.