All signs point to James Harden staying with the Philadelphia 76ers this offseason. The only question is for how long he will sign his contract extension. It’s a big conundrum for the Sixers, who are running out of time to build a contender around Joel Embiid.
After pushing in all their biggest chips for Harden at the trade deadline, the Sixers failed to make it past the second round of the playoffs yet again. Harden’s diminishing abilities as a scorer are a key reason why. He isn’t worth a max contract anymore but Philadelphia doesn’t have much leverage. Harden has the accolades and ability to enter free agency, which allows him to drive up the price for his services.
However, Philadelphia may be getting a massive assist from Harden in his contract negotiations. Following reports that Harden may take a little less than a max contract, a new report states that he may actually sign a short-term deal with Philadelphia. It would still be worth tens of millions but it won’t be over the course of four-or-so seasons. Rather, it would most likely last just two or three.
Harden is expected to pick up the $47.4 million player option for next season. After that, he may be willing to sign an extension for less than four years. His willingness to do is amazing news for the Sixers.
2 reasons James Harden signing a short-term extension would be best-case scenario for Sixers
2. Trading Harden is actually possible
After the first few years (if not the first few seconds) of a new max contract for James Harden, which would be worth roughly $270 million, the Sixers would be virtually stuck with him. It would instantly rival the nearly unmovable contracts of John Wall, Russell Westbrook and fellow Sixer Tobias Harris. For a contract worth only a few years, that isn’t the case.