James Harden’s postseason underperformance drew criticism from all over the NBA world. Many were calling him Ben Simmons 2.0 playing alongside Joel Embiid on the 76ers. Although Harden’s effort was lackluster, many people around the league still consider him to be one of the best players in the NBA. However, ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith dropped a truth bomb on Harden’s potential super max contract.
“James Harden, why don’t you come on First Take bro,” Smith said. “I dare you to sit up in front of me… I want you to sit up and tell me you deserve the max. There is no way in hell he can make that argument! He hasn’t played like the James Harden we know. Yeah, the 22, 10 and 7, give him that no doubt about it… He’s a starter in this league, he’s an All-Star caliber player, we get all of that.”