The Philadelphia 76ers took their home floor in Game 6, looking to extend their semifinal matchup against the Miami Heat to a final game. Unfortunately for them, when the final buzzer sounded, it marked the end of their season. Jimmy Butler and company were able to hold on and secure a series-clinching win by a final score of 99-90.
With the offseason looming, the Sixers have a long list of things to do to get this team closer to competing for a championship. Easily the top priority is getting All-Star guard James Harden locked up to an extension that will keep him in Philadelphia for the foreseeable future.
Harden currently has the option to either accept his player option for next season or enter free agency. If he opts for the latter, the Sixers could offer him a supermax extension of up to $250 million.
Following the Game 6 loss to the Heat, Harden was asked about his future. The former MVP gave a short and sweet answer in regards to continuing his tenure with the Sixers.
James Harden Willing to Take a Pay Cut?
While he might not be the player he once was in his prime, James Harden will still command a max contract in free agency. However, there have been rumblings throughout the year of him potentially taking less so the Sixers can bolster the roster around him and Joel Embiid.
When asked about taking a pay cut moving forward, Harden admitted he is willing to do whatever it takes to better the team. “Whatever it takes to help this team continue to grow and put us up there with the best of them,” he said.
Taking less money certainly opens up possibilities of adding more star power to the Sixers’ roster. More importantly, it will give them some much-needed breathing room when it comes time to hand out an extension to breakout star Tyrese Maxey.
There is no telling what the price tag will be, but based on these comments, it seems Harden is locked in on remaining in Philadelphia.
Fans Give Their Thoughts on Harden’s Extension
Since arriving in Philadelphia, it has been a rollercoaster ride for Harden in terms of his relationship with the fans. In the beginning, there was mass hysteria, and they couldn’t wait to see him take the floor alongside Embiid. There were countless highs but also some ugly lows.
In a win-or-go-home situation, star players are expected to step up and do whatever it takes to get a win. That is not the kind of showing we saw from Harden in Game 6. In 43 minutes of action, he posted 11 points on 4-for-9 shooting to go along with four rebounds and nine showings.
During this lackluster performance, fans rushed to social media to give their thoughts. The last thing they want to see is Harden get a max contract after what he did in the season finale.
After what Daryl Morey gave up to get Harden, it seems highly unlikely they do anything other than sign him to some form of extension. Even at this stage of his career, he showed he is capable of elevating this team to be a threat in the Eastern Conference.