James Harden: I Wanted to Retire as a Sixer, But Lost Trust in the Front Office

It’s been nearly four months since James Harden expressed his desire to leave the Philadelphia Sixers, but there hasn’t been any significant progress on that front.

During this time, James Harden has abstained from attending any of the Sixers’ preseason matches and has only taken part in a single team practice scrimmage over a period of 14 days in the training camp.

When addressing the press for the first time since joining the training camp on Friday, James Harden responded with a resounding “NO” when questioned about his belief in the possibility of mending his relationship with the front office and the franchise.

“This is not even about this situation, this is in life,” Harden said when asked to explain why he didn’t see a path to reconciliation. “When you lose trust in someone, it’s like a marriage. You lose trust in someone, you know what I mean? It’s pretty simple.”

Although James Harden has openly criticized the Sixers’ president of basketball operations, Daryl Morey, since his trade request in June, he refrained from doing so in his recent brief interaction with the media.

Instead, he indirectly hinted at feeling betrayed by individuals he had been acquainted with for more than ten years, which seemed to allude to Morey.

“When I got traded here, my whole thing was, I wanted to retire a Sixer,” Harden said. “I wanted to be here and retire a Sixer. And the front office didn’t have that in their future plans.”

As reported consistently during the offseason, James Harden had anticipated receiving a substantial multiyear contract offer from the 76ers in the summer’s free agency.

However, when he received no firm assurances of such an offer, he chose a different path, exercising his player option and requesting a trade.

Judging from Harden’s statements on Friday, it’s evident that he has no intentions of retracting his trade request anytime soon.

Nonetheless, the former MVP also seems disinclined to stage another holdout like his absence from media day and his belated arrival at training camp.

Harden hasn’t participated in a preseason game as of yet, but he indicated that he is gradually preparing and intends to play in the Sixers’ preseason finale and subsequent games, according to Noah Levick of NBC Sports Philadelphia.

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