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Shaquille O’Neal Slams James Harden For Poor Performance Against The Raptors: “He Gotta Step Up. Embiid Is Playing Like An MVP.”

Shaquille O’Neal Slams James Harden For Poor Performance Against The Raptors: “He Gotta Step Up. Embiid Is Playing Like An MVP.”

Despite a very strong start, James Harden has run into a poor slump of form with the Philadelphia 76ers. The former MVP has been struggling to play well with the 76ers and has been putting on inefficient offensive performances for the franchise. And considering Harden's playoff resume, the signs are not good for the 76ers as they prepare to make a run for the NBA championship.

Former NBA champion Shaquille O'Neal spoke about James Harden and his poor form for the 76ers after Philly lost to the Toronto Raptors. He noted that Harden has to play well as the second option to compliment Joel Embiid, who is playing at an MVP level, and help the 76ers win a championship. He thinks Harden is more than capable of doing that but hasn't shown any signs of that yet (0:53 onwards).

“Whoopty-frickin-do! The solution is simple. I wouldn’t have won my first championship if my other guy (Kobe) don’t average 28… They got another guy. They have a guy that has shown he can do that but hasn’t done that yet. First five games when they were on their honeymoon, he did that. But then he kind of faded. The solution is him. He gotta step up. Embiid is playing like an MVP, what you gonna do? I don’t know if he has the switch, I just know he needs to play at the superstar type level that we know he’s capable of. 15 assists is cool but you can’t go 3-12.”

Harden has had a lot of trouble playing against some of the better teams in the league. While Harden is still a good playmaker, the 76ers need his incredible offensive prowess to shine through for them, especially during the playoffs. If the 76ers can get both Embiid and Harden performing at the same level during the playoffs, then there will be very few teams who could stop them.

But as of now, Harden has yet to show that. The 76ers will be hoping that Harden can turn this poor form around during the playoffs, especially now that he is a second option, and doesn't have to do the heavy lifting on the offensive end of the court like he had to in Houston.