NBA

Rockets star Harden: I want to be one of those basketball players you won't forget

By Sports Desk September 17, 2019

James Harden wants to be unforgettable as he eyes multiple NBA championships and looks forward to joining forces with new Houston Rockets team-mate Russell Westbrook.

Harden has been one of the best players in the NBA since he joined the Rockets, averaging 29 or more points per game in each of the last four seasons.

The Rockets star was also named MVP in 2017-18, though seven-time All-Star Harden is yet to win a championship.

"I still haven't accomplished half of what I want to accomplish," Harden told Bleacher Report. "Like, multiple championships.

"I want to be one of those basketball players that you won't forget. And obviously, we all remember the Kobes [Kobe Bryant] and the Jordans [Michael Jordan] and the D-Wades [Dwyane Wade] and all those guys.

"I want to be in that same conversation, obviously, in championships and all that good stuff, and best shooting guards to ever play the game."

Harden's hopes of winning a title have been boosted by the arrival of Westbrook, who he played alongside during his time with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

The Rockets retooled their roster this offseason when they sent Chris Paul, along with multiple draft picks, to the Thunder in exchange for All-Star and former MVP Westbrook.

The deal reunited Westbrook and Harden, who previously played together in Oklahoma City from 2009-12. 

"[There will be] a lot of ups and downs," Harden added. "But I'm more excited to go into war, postseason, with somebody that is, like, a dog. Somebody that's a killer, for real."

Harden believes the Rockets – who reached the Western Conference semi-finals last season – have a chance to compete for a title, especially with the addition of Westbrook. 

"Of course it [not having a championship] matters to me," Harden said. "I've been thinking about it maybe the last year-and-a-half, two years. I'm on the right path. You can't rush winning a title. Some win it early, some win it late. It's perfect timing.

"The time is going to happen when the time happens. I've just got to be patient, continue to work my butt off, continue to be a great leader, great team-mate, and just try to bring as much talent and as much guys that have that same drive that I have. I think we all have it right now."

Related items

  • Zion Williamson to miss Pelicans' preseason finale due to injury Zion Williamson to miss Pelicans' preseason finale due to injury

    New Orleans Pelicans rookie Zion Williamson will miss the team's final NBA preseason game with right knee soreness.

    The Pelicans will face the New York Knicks on Friday without young star Williamson, it was announced on Thursday.

    Williamson did not make the trip to New York and will remain in New Orleans to undergo further evaluation.

    In four preseason games for the Pelicans this season, Williamson – the number one draft pick – has averaged 23.3 points.

    The Pelicans open their regular-season campaign against defending champions the Toronto Raptors on October 22.

  • NBA veteran Luol Deng signs with Bulls to retire with team at 34 NBA veteran Luol Deng signs with Bulls to retire with team at 34

    Veteran NBA forward Luol Deng signed with the Chicago Bulls on Thursday in order to retire as a member of the team.

    A two-time All-Star from South Sudan, where he has worked to develop young basketball players, Deng was taken seventh overall by the Bulls in the 2004 NBA Draft.

    "He was a role model on and off the court during his nine-plus years in Chicago, and he gave everything he had to help us win," Bulls president and COO Michael Reinsdorf said in a statement.

    "I want to thank Luol for not only what he accomplished on the court for the team, but also for the leadership he demonstrated through his philanthropic efforts."

    In 902 NBA games over 15 seasons with the Bulls, Cleveland Cavaliers, Miami Heat, Los Angeles Lakers and last season with the Minnesota Timberwolves he averaged 14.8 points, 6.1 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 34.3 minutes per game.

    The 34-year-old averaged 15.9 points and 6.7 rebounds in 62 playoff games in seven postseasons, six with Chicago and one with Miami.

    John Paxson, Bulls executive VP of basketball operations, said Deng would be remembered for "the fierce competitiveness he brought to both ends of the floor every night."

    Deng ranks in the top five on the Bulls all-time list for minutes (fifth, 22,882), points (fourth, 10,286), field goals made (fifth, 3,987) and attempted (fifth, 8,675) and steals (fifth, 639).

    He led the Bulls in scoring in 2011-12 (15.3 ppg) and 2012-13 (16.5 ppg).

    The Bulls will honour Deng at a game to be determined later this season.

  • This Week in US Sports: Nationals make first World Series, Ramsey has a new home This Week in US Sports: Nationals make first World Series, Ramsey has a new home

    There will be a World Series game in Washington D.C. for the first time since 1933.

    Two quarterbacks are heading to the bench and Jalen Ramsey has finally been dealt.

    While all of that has been going on there has been some monetary proposals in the NBA.

    All that and more on this week in US Sports.

     

    1. Nationals earn first World Series berth

    It was a historic week in Washington D.C. after the Nationals swept the St Louis Cardinals in four games to earn the first World Series berth in Nationals/Expos history.

    The Nationals were the 29th team to make the Fall Classic, leaving the Seattle Mariners as the only organisation to not have been to one.

    While this is a big day for this franchise, it is also one for some very loyal Washington D.C. fans as this will be the first World Series played in D.C. since 1933 when the Senators faced the Giants and lost in five games.

    The Senators moved to Minnesota in 1961 and became the Twins.

     

    2. Quarterbacks head to the bench

    The Marcus Mariota era may be over in Tennessee, while the Josh Rosen era in Miami is at least on hold.

    The Tennessee Titans announced this week that Mariota will be replaced under center by Ryan Tannehill going forward. The Miami Dolphins also announced Rosen will once again be on the bench and replaced by veteran Ryan Fitzpatrick.

    Rosen is still young having been taken in the first round of the 2018 NFL Draft so he has some time to still find his way, but Mariota is bordering on being a veteran at this point, so this very well might be the end of his career as a starter.

     

    3. Ramsey on the move

    Ramsey finally got his wish this week as he was traded by the Jacksonville Jaguars to the Los Angeles Rams for first-round picks in 2020 and 2021 and a fourth-round pick in 2021.

    This came on the heels of the Rams' trade of Pro Bowl cornerback Marcus Peters to the Baltimore Ravens earlier in the day.

    Ramsey asked to be traded by the Jaguars after a Week 2 spat with head coach Doug Marrone.

    He got his wish and is thrilled to be playing for a NFL Super Bowl contender.

     

    4. NBA contracts being weighed and measured

    It is that time of year where players and teams figure out what they will be paid or what can be afforded, and Wednesday, several reports came out that players have been given some offers.

    Pascal Siakam is weighing an extension with the Toronto Raptors, as is Bogdan Bogdanovic with the Sacramento Kings, but Boston Celtics forward Jaylen Brown turned down a four-year, $80million extension which came as a surprise to some.

    At the same time, the Kings have apparently not offered guard Buddy Hield an extension and he may be open to a trade if they do not give him the money he is looking for.

    The NBA season starts next week, but there is still plenty to be decided going forward.

© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.