For years, James Harden terrorized opponents with his Hall of Fame-caliber scoring ability. For years, the Rockets were serious contenders to win a championship, thanks to Harden’s MVP-level play, just falling short due to untimely injury woes and unlucky three-point shooting. However, all good things come to an end, and the Rockets traded away The Beard to jumpstart their rebuild in early 2021.
Plenty of things change in the NBA, but the rumor mill never stops churning. Thus, some have speculated about a potential Houston return for James Harden should the Philadelphia 76ers flame out yet again with an early playoff exit. Naturally, this has led to mixed reactions from fans on Twitter.
Some were welcome to the idea, clearly still moved by Harden’s impact on the franchise for the greater part of the past decade.
ComeBack Goat we miss you
— Jovan (@BigMeekHTX) December 21, 2022
Can’t happen soon enough
— Harry Curnow (@HarryCurnow) December 22, 2022
I would love to see the beard back in H-Town
— Yetijam🎄🎅 (@FilmsSlow) December 21, 2022
However, some were quick to point out that a James Harden-Houston reunion doesn’t make sense on multiple levels. Not only are the Rockets rebuilding around two ball-dominant guards in Kevin Porter Jr. and Jalen Green, the Rockets’ timeline doesn’t align with Harden’s desire to win a championship.
That actually would be amazing to see, but would it stunt those young guys’ growth with him taking the ball out of their hands?
— 𝕊𝕡𝕖𝕔𝕚𝕒𝕝✨𝕂✨ (@Its_Kikiforreal) December 21, 2022
Meanwhile, some fans reacted in a way that will remind everyone that Harden isn’t exactly the most beloved superstar in the league. They pointed out that this report is a sign that The Beard is ready to bail on his current team, the Sixers, the instant the adversity becomes too much to bear.
Ultimate quitter smh
— 🈵 (@treyfivecarti) December 21, 2022
What??? Harden jumping ship when there’s slight adversity??? I’m shocked!
— Anthony (@acg89) December 21, 2022
Going back to his ex if his ex want him back
— fan (@RepeatedWs) December 21, 2022
At the end of the day, it doesn’t seem likely that James Harden would leave the Sixers, much less for the Rockets. After all, Harden took a paycut to stay alongside Joel Embiid. Anything can happen in today’s NBA. With the title race wide open, this might be Harden’s best shot at winning a much-coveted ring.