James Harden and the Philadelphia 76ers are ready to keep competing in the stacked Eastern Conference. After a disappointing second-round exit in the 2022 NBA playoffs, the Sixers started to work to get the best players to compete the next season. Joel Embiid will have another chance to play for the championship, with James Harden returning to the squad.
This time, however, instead of opting into his $47 million option for this season, the Beard is taking a pay cut that will allow the team to spend more money on other players that can help Philly reach their ultimate goal.
According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Harden is taking a $15 million pay cut on a new two-year deal with the Sixers.
Sources: James Harden is taking a $15 million pay cut for next season that allowed Philadelphia to elevate roster — with sole focus on a championship run in 2023. Harden opted out of his $47M player option and now plans to sign a new two-year deal with a player option in Year 2.
Everyone around Harden has understood the focus on his workout regimen this offseason and a championship goal for 2022-23. His close relationships with those around the organization, including Michael Rubin and Daryl Morey, played a major role in trust between the two sides.
This is great news for the Sixers, who will have more cash to land the right players that can help them compete for the title. Harden knows he's not the same player he used to be, and this deal can help his squad bring the right players that can show up when he's having a low night. It's great to see that he's looking to win and is willing to make sacrifices to do so.