James Harden has opted out of his contract with the Philadelphia 76ers and will now become a free agent, though he is expected to remain with the Sixers.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, Harden has declined his $47.3 million player option with the Sixers in a move to renegotiate a new deal that will be beneficial to both sides.

To recall, it has been reported earlier that the Sixers are chasing PJ Tucker and it's basically a “done deal” for a three-year contract worth $30 million. However, there's a catch: they would need  to clear A LOT of cap space if James Harden were to opt-in to his $47.3 million option.

The possibility of Harden opting out has been discussed as a possibility, but given the amount of money he's leaving on the table, it wasn't a guarantee.

It is certainly a great sign that Harden is working with the Sixers to improve the roster by giving them some flexibility. Now, the next step for both sides is to come up with a new deal that will allow Philly to still chase and add for improvements on the team to make a championship contender.

Harden and the Sixers had title aspirations last season, but their championship hopes quickly dispersed after The Beard struggled to get his rhythm with Philly and they suffered a second-round exit at the hands of the Miami Heat.

This time, it is clear Harden and the rest of the team have eyes on the big prize and nothing else.