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James Harden Gives Strong Message In Chat With Allen Iverson

(via EssentiallySports)

(via EssentiallySports)

James Harden may be among the greatest players in basketball, but he has no shortage of critics. Whether it's for his history of playoff failures, his flopping tendencies, or simply his attitude on the basketball court, Harden's staunchest haters always have something fueling their fire.

The Beard is usually quiet when it comes to confronting the naysayers, but in a chat with A.I., it was almost as if he was speaking directly to them as he explained why he and Iverson went through much of of the same situations.

"I feel like everything that I'm going through right now is what you went through. Just a newer version. Criticism, negative energy, negativity, 'why does he do this,' 'why does he do that' -- like nobody understands. And I'm cool with that.

I'm not here to explain myself or try to get people to understand where I come from or what I do or why I do it. I just ball."

Allen Iverson seems like a pretty accurate comparison to James. Like Harden, A.I. was a beast on the offensive end who proved himself to be a bonafide superstar. And, like Harden, he faced a lot of heat for his lack of defensive intensity and for his failures in the postseason.

Though, unlike Iverson, Harden still has time to prove the critics wrong. It will be interesting to see what he's able to this season, as he and Russ prepare to make waves in Orlando.