Sixers refute James Harden’s claim that he was promised max deal

A source within the Philadelphia 76ers refuted James Harden‘s claim that the team had promised him a maximum-level contract more than a year ago, per Marc Stein of The Stein Line.James Harden

Harden told Sam Amick of The Athletic that he was promised a max deal by head of basketball operations Daryl Morey after agreeing to a two-year, $69 million in the summer of 2022. However, the source told Stein that no such promise was made.

“The deal included a player option for Year 2, which Harden angrily picked up in late June once it became apparent that the Sixers would not be maxing him out,” Stein wrote.

That trade eventually came, earlier this season, when Harden and P.J. Tucker were sent to the Los Angeles Clippers.

“Yeah, me and Daryl had a really good relationship,” Harden said, via Amick. “So (in the past), a week or two after we lose in the playoffs, it would be all about trying to figure out how to improve the team,” Harden said. “(They’d talk about) ‘How do we get better?’ And that’s been going on for 10-plus years, you know what I mean? And then this year, there was no communication. And at that point, it’s like, ‘OK, I see what’s going on.’ I’m very intelligent.

“So then I just figure out ‘What’s my next move, and what do I want to do?’ So I understand that, at the end of the day, this is a business. And just like he has to do what’s best for his organization, I’ve got to do what’s best for me and my family. It’s as simple as that.”

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