The Houston Rockets fought their way through an overtime win over the Boston Celtics on Saturday night, and let’s just say James Harden may have pushed a little harder than anyone on the court.
Harden scored 21 points on only 7-of-24 shooting, but it was enough for the Rockets to pull off the 111-110 victory. At one point in the first half, cameras showed some sort of mystery stain on Harden’s backside. There was a lot of speculation that it was, well, poop.
We’re not quite ready to say Harden crapped his pants, but there’s only one person who knows for sure. What we do know is that Harden would not be the first athlete to soil himself during competition, so anything is possible.
Heck, even Paul Pierce says his infamous wheel chair incident from the playoffs several years ago was a result of having to go so bad he needed to get off the court, so it happens. If Harden was trying to hold that in throughout the entire first half, it’s no wonder he had trouble knocking down shots.
Giannis Antetokounmpo has made it clear in recent weeks that he is not a big fan of James Harden, and the feeling appears to be mutual.
When Antetokounmpo was picking his All-Star Game roster earlier this month on live TV, he had a funny moment while deciding between Harden, Kemba Walker and Trae Young. The Greek Freak said he didn’t want to pick Harden because he’d rather have a teammate who is going to pass. Harden was asked about that during an interview with ESPN’s Rachel Nichols that aired on Friday, and he pointed out that he had more assists than Walker at the time Giannis made the remark. Harden also said it would be a lot easier to play basketball if he were 7 feet tall.
The tension between Harden and Giannis may have begun last year when the two players finished 1-2 in the MVP voting. Harden admitted he was annoyed the media gave the award to Antetokounmpo, which Giannis may have taken as a sign of disrespect.
Giannis also threw an elbow at Harden during the All-Star Game, which may or may not have been inadvertent. If anything happens between the two players on the court going forward, it will be hard to believe it is a coincidence.
Giannis Antetokounmpo took a funny shot at James Harden while picking his All-Star team on Thursday.
Antetokounmpo and LeBron James are the captains of the two All-Star teams that will play in the All-Star Game in Chicago on February 16. The captains drafted their respective teams on TNT Thursday, and Giannis had a funny moment when deciding between Harden, Kemba Walker and Trae Young. He said his decision was between Walker and Young and that he didn’t want Harden.
“I want somebody that’s gonna pass the ball, that’s what I want,” Antetokounmpo said, to multiple laughs.
LeBron ended up getting Harden on his team.
Harden is a ball-dominant player, but that’s also by design in Houston’s offense. Playing in the All-Star Game, things would likely be different, but it’s still funny to hear Giannis keep it real by saying that. So long as they keep Harden away from certain places on Saturday night, they should be fine.
Giannis’ team included himself, Kemba Walker, Joel Embiid, Pascal Siakam, Trae Young, Khris Middleton, Bam Adebayo, Rudy Gobert, Jimmy Butler, Kyle Lowry, Brandon Ingram and Donovan Mitchell. LeBron’s team included Anthony Davis, Kawhi Leonard, Luka Doncic, Harden, Damian Lillard, Ben Simmons, Nikola Jokic, Jayson Tatum, Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook and Domantas Sabonis.
Ja Morant had some extra motivation on Tuesday night.
The rookie led his Memphis Grizzlies to a 121-110 win over the Houston Rockets. Morant had 26 points, five rebounds and eight assists in the game and made an impressive 10/11 field goals. He also went 3/4 on three-pointers and was sure to let James Harden know about that.
After Harden failed to close out on a Morant 3-pointer, the rookie was seen saying “tell that motherf—er about me!”
That seemed to be Morant’s response to a lack of respect he felt Harden showed him by giving him so much room to take the shot. Harden paid the price.
Morant had another sweet moment when he went behind his back around Harden and threw a lob:
Now that’s how you earn respect as a rookie. You take it to the veterans one player at a time until they learn.
James Harden and Dejounte Murray got into a bit of a shoving match early in Monday night’s game between the Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs.
Murray stole the ball and got an easy transition layup to extend his team’s lead to 22-7 late in the first quarter. Harden wasn’t happy and bumped Murray under the basket after the layup. Murray bumped Harden right back and then shoved the Rockets star.
Credit to Murray for not backing down after that cheap shot from Harden. There was no need for the bump, and it’s good Murray stood up for himself after it.
The NBA has denied the Houston Rockets’ bid to protest their Dec. 3 loss to the San Antonio Spurs despite agreeing that the referees misapplied the rule on a James Harden dunk that was not counted.
With 7:50 left in the game, Harden dunked the basketball, only to have it go in and come back out of the net. The basket was incorrectly waved off, and the Rockets ended up losing the game by two, prompting the protest.
In a statement, NBA commissioner Adam Silver admitted that the call was wrong, and Houston was incorrectly denied the opportunity to challenge the error. However, he added that, due to the fact that there were nearly eight minutes left in regulation, Silver decided that the Rockets “had sufficient time to overcome the error,” and thus the game would not be replayed from that point.
The Rockets had genuinely believed the NBA would take action in light of how egregious the error was, so they’ll come away disappointed here. It’s clear that the referees failed them, but they did have a 13-point lead at the time that they failed to hold down the stretch. In the NBA’s view, that failure is on them, not the officials.
The officiating crew working Tuesday night’s game between the Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs made a crucial error that may have impacted the final result, and the Rockets believe the NBA is going to take some sort of action to remedy the situation.
ESPN’s Tim MacMahon reports that the Rockets are hopeful the NBA will either award the victory to Houston or order that the two teams replay the final 7:50 of the game at a later date. The Spurs came away with a 135-133 victory in overtime, but the Rockets should have had two more points after a Harden dunk in the fourth quarter was mistakenly waved off.
James Capers, the crew chief working the game, told a pool reporter the officials incorrectly thought Harden’s dunk went through the hoop and back out through the net, which would be basket interference. However, replays showed that the ball came back over the rim after clearing through the net. Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni was baffled about why he was not able to challenge the call.
Capers explained that the play was reviewable, but all challenges have to happen during a 30-second window in a stoppage of play. He said that window passed as the Rockets were trying to protest the call and figure out what had happened.
The Rockets believe the NBA could award them the victory, since they would have been leading after regulation if Harden’s dunk counted. Sources told MacMahon that giving them the win seems unlikely.
There is, however, precedent for a portion of the game to be replayed. Back in March of 2008, the Miami Heat and Atlanta Hawks replayed the final 51.9 seconds of a game after an official scorer incorrectly ruled that Shaquille O’Neal had fouled out with that much time remaining four months prior. The Hawks won 117-111 the first time and still won 114-111 after the 51.9 seconds were replayed.
Between responding to a heckler during a free throw and the dunk that should have counted, Harden had a rough night. Those two points clearly should have been awarded to the Rockets, so it would not be a surprise if the NBA has the two teams replay a portion of the game later in the season.
The Houston Rockets are considering a protest over a James Harden dunk not counting during Tuesday night’s game against the San Antonio Spurs.
Houston was leading 102-89 in the fourth quarter when Harden dunked on a breakaway. Though the arena put points on the board, the referees saw the ball go back through the hoop and said the dunk did not count, thinking it was basket interference. Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni says he tried challenging the call but wasn’t able to.
The game was tied at 115 at the end of regulation and went to double overtime before San Antonio won 135-133.
The Houston Chronicle’s Jonathan Feigen reported after the game that the Rockets were considering protesting the game over the missed points.
Harden told reporters after the game that the ball went in, which is what the video showed. As if that call weren’t bad enough, the Rockets lost when Harden was called for an offensive foul at the end of the second overtime. Between all this and the fan taunt, it was a rough night for Harden in San Antonio.
Here was the explanation from the officials:
UPDATE: The Rockets are reportedly confident that the NBA will step in and take some sort of action to remedy the situation.
James Harden had a great response to a fan who criticized his style of play during a game against the San Antonio Spurs on Tuesday night.
Harden is often judged for his style of play. Many believe his style isn’t always the most aesthetically pleasing, and some fellow players feel he benefits from officiating. A big part of Harden’s game is getting to the free throw line, where he generally converts at a high percentage. On Tuesday, a fan in San Antonio yelled to Harden that “no one wants to see a free-throw shooting contest” when Harden was at the line.
Harden’s response was fantastic.
How’s that for a response? During his recent 60-point game against the Atlanta Hawks, Harden went to the free-throw line 23 times, making 20 of them. Entering Tuesday’s game, Harden led the NBA in free-throw attempts with 274 in 19 games.
Free throws may not be the most exciting part of a basketball game, but if Harden is playing, there’s a good chance several will be taken.
James Harden had another absolutely sublime game on Saturday against the Atlanta Hawks, but he found it lacking in just one tiny way.
The Houston Rockets star erupted for 60 points in just three quarters of work during a 158-111 blowout of the lowly Hawks. Harden was a magnificent 16-for-24 from the field (including 8-for-14 from deep) and added three rebounds, eight assists, three steals, and a block to his line as well.
The only problem? The bearded guard finished just a point shy of his career-high of 61, which he set against the New York Knicks last January. Harden saw an in-arena graphic relaying the bad news to him at the end of the third quarter, leading to this priceless reaction:
The Rockets were up 127-73 after three quarters, and Harden surely would have obliterated his career-high if it wasn’t such a blowout. If it’s any solace though, Harden’s 61-point game was pretty darn cool in and of itself.