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James Harden shakes off Bogdan Bogdanovic for the step-back 3, hits the finger wag

Rockets

Houston Rockets guard James Harden had it all working from the floor during Saturday’s win over the Sacramento Kings, ultimately finishing with his fifth 50-point triple-double of the 2018-19 campaign. Unfortunately for Kings wing Bogdan Bogdanovic, who has his own savvy array of moves in his arsenal, he was merely caught up in the rapture of Harden during the second quarter, unable to defend what so many in the league have found undefendable:

That three-point attempt was one of 23 that Harden fired up Saturday, which ties his career high. Seven of those attempts found the bottom of the net, allowing him to finish the night 13-for-31 overall, adding a 17-for-18 effort from the free-throw line en route to helping him reach the 50-point mark, 31 of which came in the first half. He also tossed in 11 rebounds and 10 assists on the night.

Conversely, Bogdanovic nearly reeled off a triple-double of his own, going for 24 points, nine rebounds and eight assists on a much more efficient 8-for-14 shooting, including 5-for-7 from behind the arc.

The Harden stepback has helped lead to his 36.4 points per game average, which is set to rank as the eighth-highest mark in league history. There’s certainly little shame in allowing a player who has drilled 353 threes this season to make one on his patented move.

Bogdanovic won’t have to wait very long to get another crack at Harden, as the two teams are slated to meet up again Tuesday, this time in Sacramento as Houston makes their push towards the playoffs and the Kings continue their development heading into the 2019-20 year.