It's not a secret that James Harden is one of the most polarizing players in NBA history. There's no denying his scoring ability and his never-ending bag of tricks. However, some old-school basketball fans still find ways to criticize him.
James Harden has made a fool of NBA defenses for years now. He's one of the most unstoppable scorers ever and has put video-game numbers for the past three seasons, even in an era where players score at a higher pace and take way many more three-pointers per game.
That's why ESPN's Stephen A. Smith wanted to take a minute to have Harden's back, as people continue to hate on him and even suggest that the Houston Rockets should move on from him already:
"I´m tired of people not appreciating the greatness of James Harden. It ain´t just one-on-one basketball, his ability to get to the free-throw line, to draw fouls, to dance on you, to create his own shot, to hit from three, to hit midrange shots, to finish at the basket," Smith said on ESPN's First Take.
Harden is one of the most talented players in the league. Yes, his lack of success in the playoffs will always stain his impressive résumé, but that hasn't always been on him. This year, for instance, he lived up to the expectations in the postseason.
The Houston Rockets must find a way to surround Harden with the kind of players he needs to go the distance and finally get over the hump. Then again, even if he never wins an NBA Championship or if he never makes it back to the NBA Finals, there's just no denying that he's already a Hall of Famer, so we should give credit where its due, even if we're not a fan of his style.