James Harden and the Houston Rockets are heading to the Bahamas for some much-needed team bonding  before the rigorous demands of the NBA regular season. The recently crowned NBA MVP spoke about the importance of the trip away together with Mark Berman of FOX 26 Sports.

“It’s extremely important,” Harden said in an interview with FOX 26 Sports. “I think last year it was great for us because we kind of built our chemistry up before training camp, and then obviously adding Chris (Paul) and adding PJ (Tucker), we got a year under our belt.

“Bringing other guys in, James (Ennis) and ‘Melo (Carmelo Anthony), just got to get them acclimated before training camp starts, something we need.”

The Rockets’ leader understands how important team chemistry is in order to be successful in the NBA, as the dynamic shooting guard made the Finals with the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2012 and was the leading force behind the greatest regular season in Rockets history last campaign.

Despite their NBA-best record of 65-17, Harden and company were left with a bitter taste in their mouths when they lost Game 7 of the Western Conference Finals to the eventual champion Golden State Warriors with two chances to close the series. Of course, the hamstring injury to superstar point guard Chris Paul played a role in their demise, but the Rockets still have to feel bummed with how last season ended.

They’re now looking to go one better with what they believe is an upgrade to their roster. The front office said goodbye to swingman Trevor Ariza and defensive stopper Luc Mbah a Moute, but did welcome future Hall of Famer Carmelo Anthony and athletic perimeter wing James Ennis as their replacements. Michael Carter-Williams also joined the fray.

They may have lost some defense with the departure of Ariza and Mbah a Moute, but with the addition of Anthony, their offensive could go to new heights if he’s utilized correctly.

With a couple of fresh faces, Harden wants nothing more than for everyone to become acclimated with each other over this upcoming trip.

“It brings us together,” Harden said. “Kind of gets us to know each other a little bit before camp starts. When camp starts we’ll fall right into it. We’ll talk about basketball. We’ll talk about life. It should be a good time.”

Look for the Rockets to go one better this time around, as they continue on their quest to bring a title to Houston for the first time since 1995.