(via Fadeaway World)

James Harden is a legend on the court in many ways. During the course of his tenure with the Houston Rockets, he has become one of the greatest offensive players ever.

But he’s also a legend for his infamous beard, a feature that has become the subject of his player branding. Do you ever wonder how that thing got started?

In a story by Kelsey Driscoll of AOL.com, evidence was found of a barefaced Harden’s existence — way back in 2005, when he was just 15 years old. Harden said that the beard began in 2009, at Arizona State, when he was just too lazy to shave. That action, or inaction, ended up being a major part of his identity years down the road.

(via the Swish Report)

The beard has become an important part of Harden’s persona on the court. He’d be near unrecognizable without it.

But at 30-years-old, Harden is focused on more than the appearance of his face. This season, with the Rockets, he is expected to make a deep playoff run. The acquisition of Russell Westbrook, they have one of the most talented backcourts in the NBA.

The 2018 MVP averaged 36 points, 6.6 rebounds, and 7.5 assists per game last season. Can he surpass those numbers this year?