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James Harden thrilled to be in 2017-18 NBA MVP conversation

When Houston Rockets superstar guard James Harden hears those MVP chants at Toyota Center, he can’t help but get that much more motivated to take the award home after the season is completed.

In a video posted by Tim McMahon of ESPN, Harden commented about his name being thrust into the NBA Most Valuable Player conversation after Rockets practice on Thursday.

“It’s a great feeling. Just to be in that conversation, just to be playing at that level every year is something I need to be doing,” Harden said on Thursday. “I’ve worked my butt off for it and just continue to do it, just continue to compete, continue to learn and just be better, be the best player I can be every single night.”

He certainly has worked his butt off, to say the least. Harden is currently the league’s leading scorer at 31.6 points per game. He is second only to Oklahoma City Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook in assists with 9.4 per game.

Tomorrow night, Harden and the Rockets will host their hated rival in the San Antonio Spurs in a primetime matchup on ESPN.

“They’re a good team, but every game for us is a measuring stick,” Harden said of the Spurs. “We’re not focused on any other team but ourselves.”

The Spurs, who finally got back star small forward Kawhi Leonard in their most recent game against the Dallas Mavericks, are in search of their 20th win of the season on Friday night.