There are a myriad of opinions on James Harden’s addition to the LA Clippers thus far. On paper, a former MVP and scoring champion would do nothing but help a team like the Clippers, and would get them much closer to their goal of taking home a championship.
But as we have already explored, there are certainly some red flags when Harden’s recent history is examined. Some of these concerns pertain to his on-court fit, but many more of them involve how he has conducted himself off the hardwood over the last several years.
Widely known and respected Senior NBA Writer for The Ringer, Howard Beck, dove into this topic in a recent article. He tore Harden apart for all that he has done to damage the teams he has played with, eviscerating him with just one sentence.
“If this were a children’s book, Harden would be the Very Hungry Caterpillar, except instead of chewing holes through apples, plums, and leaves, he chews through teammates, coaches, and franchises, and instead of turning into a butterfly, he just devolves into an increasingly embittered caterpillar, unable to evolve at all,” said Beck.
Howard Beck ripped James Harden for his past actions
This incredibly savage sentence from Beck puts into perspective just how much damage Harden has done while playing for four teams in the last three full calendar years. While in Houston, the Rockets tended to Harden’s every request, bringing him star teammates like Dwight Howard, Chris Paul and Russell Westbrook, and getting rid of each at his request, too.
When Harden desired a change of scenery, Houston gave him his wish and sent him to the Nets to play with Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. Just over a year after arriving in Brooklyn, he again asked out. The organization gave him what he wanted, sending him to Philadelphia to pair up with Joel Embiid.
When Harden’s relationship with Sixers Head Coach Doc Rivers went south, the team parted ways with him to appease Harden. Even so, he still requested another trade and asked to be sent to the Clippers. Once again, Harden got what he asked for.
It is easy to see why Beck made the comparison he did. James Harden is undoubtedly one of the greatest scorers of the last decade, and there is certainly a world in which things work out with him in LA. But considering all that we have seen from him in recent years, there is every reason to be cautious.