James Harden on relationship with Doc Rivers: “Our relationship is okay”


The Philadelphia 76ers’ heartbreaking loss in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Boston Celtics has left the team and its fans pondering the future. Amidst the disappointment, questions arise regarding James Harden’s relationship with head coach Doc Rivers.

The 76ers, who led the series 3-2, ultimately fell short, losing the decisive Game 7 in Boston by a score of 88-112. Harden, who played a pivotal role in the team’s playoff campaign, had a subpar performance in the crucial matchup, tallying only 9 points on 3-of-11 shooting, including a lackluster 1-of-5 from beyond the arc, during his 41 minutes on the court.

After the game, Harden was reminded of his previous remarks about joining the 76ers due to his admiration for Coach Rivers. When asked about his relationship with Rivers, the former league MVP offered a terse response: “Our relationship is okay.” The brevity of his reply raises doubts about the true state of their connection and leaves room for speculation.

Harden’s decision to leave the Brooklyn Nets in February 2022, in pursuit of a fresh start with the 76ers, was partially influenced by his desire to play under Rivers’ guidance. However, the disappointing playoff exit and the strain on their relationship might prompt Harden to reassess his future with the team.

As the offseason approaches, Harden faces a critical decision regarding his player option for the upcoming season. He has until June 29 to determine whether he will opt in or explore other possibilities. Rumors have already surfaced, suggesting a potential return to the Houston Rockets, the team where Harden made a name for himself before his stint with the Nets.

The uncertainty surrounding Harden’s relationship with Rivers and his upcoming contract decision adds a layer of complexity to the 76ers’ offseason plans. The team’s prolonged absence from the Conference Finals since 2001 highlights the need for adjustments and improvements to achieve their championship aspirations.

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