Houston Rockets guard James Harden seems to have borrowed a page from LeBron James’ playoff strategy by deleting his Instagram account. James has a long history of taking a hiatus from social media during the NBA playoffs, but Harden’s decision appears to be a bit more drastic.
Harden’s Instagram disappearing act dates back to earlier this year, not just since he arrived in the NBA bubble in Orlando. Reddit sleuths discovered Harden appeared to deactivate his account back in January. Harden is one of the biggest NBA stars and likely wanted to take a break from the Instagram scrutiny. The Rockets guard still has his Twitter account activated but last tweeted in May.
On the court, Harden is doing just fine without Instagram, as the All-Star has shown no signs of rust since returning to play in Orlando. Harden nearly had 50 points along with a triple-double in the Rockets’ opening matchup against the Mavericks. He finished with 49 points, nine rebounds, eight assists, three steals and three blocks while shooting a blazing 14-of-20 from the field.
LeBron Does Not Plan to Enter ‘Zero Dark Thirty’ Mode During the 2020 NBA Playoffs
As for James, it sounds like the Lakers star will take a reprieve from his typical “zero dark thirty” mode he enters during the NBA playoffs. James cited being away from his family in the Orlando bubble as making social media a bit more necessary in the upcoming postseason.
“LeBron said he won’t turn off his phone during the playoffs this time around,” Sports Illustrated’s Melissa Rohlin tweeted. “He said he needs to check in with his family and mom everyday. …LeBron called his wife “a beast” at holding things down at home & thanked Steve Jobs for FaceTime so he could stay in touch with his family.”
Harden Recently Sounded Off on Social Media
Harden is clearly not a major fan of social media. During a recent GQ interview, Harden discussed how the internet can sometimes spread things that are not true.
“And then social media is worse than TV,” Harden noted. “You have people saying, ‘I saw that on social media. Okay, that must be true.’ Well, it’s not true, just because somebody on TV is saying it. And I’m not going to sit here and argue with him or argue with a fan or argue with anybody else about that. That’s why I told you that I stay in my box.”
Rockets general manager Daryl Morey recently took to Twitter to defend Harden. Fox Sports’ Nick Wright tagged Morey to get his opinion on ESPN analysts Mark Jackson and Stan Van Gundy criticizing Harden during a recent broadcast.
“I wonder what @dmorey was thinking seeing Harden, who’s averaged 35 a game for 2 years now, drop 23 in the 1st quarter, about an hour after JVG & Mark Jackson were saying how he’d improve as an offensive player if he’d just take more midrange twos,” Wright asked.
Morey provided a sarcastic response pointing to Harden’s stellar performance against the Mavericks.
“Harden was definitely struggling out there yesterday – always good to get advice on how to improve your game,” Morey tweeted.