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Rockets superstar James Harden claims his scoring outbursts in preseason don’t matter

Rockets, James Harden

Houston Rockets superstar guard James Harden was up to his usual tricks in the preseason.

The Beard led the NBA in scoring and assists in the preseason, putting up 40 and 39 points in the final two games for the Rockets.

Harden, however, says his scoring outbursts in exhibition games don’t matter.

“That’s preseason,” Harden said, via Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle. “That doesn’t count. I was just out there practicing, getting a rhythm. (Monday,) I did some good conditioning, ran some stairs. (Tuesday) we’ll get a good practice in, play a little bit, get after it. Tomorrow will be the same thing. Then it counts on Thursday.”

Harden and the Rockets open the 2019-20 season on Thursday when they host Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks. Everyone in the league is anxious to see if Harden and Russell Westbrook will be able to co-exist on the floor and lead Houston to a championship.

Harden led the NBA in scoring last season for the second consecutive year. He put up 36.1 points per game and scored at least 30 points 32 games in a row at one point in the season for the Rockets.

Harden also scored at least 50 points nine times. He shot 44.2 percent from the field, 36.8 percent from beyond the arc and 87.9 percent from the foul line.