The James Harden saga has finally come to an end or so we think, but as you may have noticed by now, things are never quiet around the NBA. Wherever you see, there are shots being fired left and right, and this situation wasn't the exception to that rule.
Harden was heavily criticized for the way he handled his desire to leave the Houston Rockets, with Shaquille O'Neal even calling him out for not delivering and pretty much wasting years of top-tier teammates during his time with the franchise.
That's why Harden made the most of his debut with the Brooklyn Nets and took it to his Instagram account to call out the former NBA players criticizing him, and shouting out Dwyane Wade for his positive attitude towards him:
"We do all this talking about uplifting the next African American athlete/male and some of these ex NBA players use national TV or their own social media to do the opposite. I see it I just stay to myself. The real never lose! Salute to @DwyaneWade for being solid," Harden wrote on a story.
Harden refers to Dywane Wade's comments about his happiness from joining the Brooklyn Nets and how he's glad for a fellow African American:
Clearly, Harden has never been the one to take criticism lightly, so this doesn't come as a surprise. However, it's kind of shocking to see that he's using the African American thing to shift the narrative in his favor, given the fact that the vast majority of the league is also African American.
Shaquille O'Neal and Charles Barkley are doing their job, which is to call out players when they do wrong and laud them when they do things right, regardless of their race. You don't get a free pass around the NBA just because being African American, most players are.
Then again, it's great to watch James Harden balling, regardless of if you root for the Nets, Rockets, or not. Hopefully, this narrative will go away soon and we can go back to just enjoying basketball.