James Harden Contract Details Leaked: ‘Free Agency Next Summer’

joel embiid james harden

Getty Joel Embiid (L) and James Harden (R).

The wait is finally over. The Philadelphia 76ers officially agreed to terms with James Harden on July 20, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Harden will sign a two-year deal worth $68.6 million, including a player option for the 2023-24 season.

The 2018 MVP took $14.4 million less for the 2022-23 season by declining his player option. The unselfish move allowed the Sixers to use the full mid-level exception on free agent P.J. Tucker and the bi-annual exception to sign Danuel House, per Wojnarowski. Harden now has the flexibility to become a free agent next summer and negotiate another new deal.

Harden has been very open and honest about doing whatever it takes to win a championship in Philly. Coming back to the organization at a discounted rate was something he felt he needed to do. In addition to adding Tucker and House, the Sixers traded for De’Anthony Melton and inked Trevelin Queen.

“Taking less money this year to sign as many players as we needed to help us contend and be the last team standing was very, very important to me,” Harden told The Associated Press. “I wanted to show the organization, the Sixers fans and everybody else who supports what we’re trying to accomplish, what I’m trying to accomplish individually, that this is what I’m about.”

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Harden Working Out with Teammates in Los Angeles

Harden posted a TikTok video where he is seen working out with Sixers teammates Joel Embiid and P.J. Tucker in Los Angeles. Team president Daryl Morey is in Los Angeles, too, and plans to meet with them (via John Clark).

Morey’s long-standing relationship with Harden has been well-documented. He tried to get him at the trade deadline from Houston before prying him away from Brooklyn at last year’s trade deadline. Now Morey has his favorite player inked, with a “most important year” approaching.

“I think every year from now ’til the end of this run will be the most important year,” Morey told the Rights to Ricky Sanchez podcast, as transcribed by Forbes. “This year, most important. Then next year, when we’re in it, will be the most important. I mean, the time is now, which I love. Which I love. It may take us some time to figure it out, but the time is now.”

New Signature Wine Collection Launched

Harden has been busy this week, between signing contracts and promoting his brand. The 10-time All-Star was in Los Angeles for the launch of J-HARDEN, his first signature wine collection in partnership with Accolade Wines.

Available in California Cabernet Sauvignon and a California Red Blend, Harden’s wine will hit select retailers and his online store starting on September 1, 2022. The recommended retail price for a bottle is $16.99.

“My entrance into the wine game is much bigger than just having my own label,” Harden said in a press release. “I have always seen the wine industry as a closed-door environment. Through my partnership with Accolade and the release of J-HARDEN, my goal is to make a high-quality product that can be enjoyed by the masses at a reasonable price. If you’re new to wine or an experienced enthusiast, I believe you’ll love this wine as much as I do.”

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