James Harden Plans To Sign Two-Year Deal With Sixers

After turning down a $47.4MM player option for the 2022/23 season, star guard James Harden will accept a starting salary about $15MM below that on a new deal with the Sixerssources tell Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). That would result in a ’22/23 salary in the $32-33MM range.

According to Charania, Harden intends to sign a two-year contract with Philadelphia that includes a player option for ’23/24. While the exact terms of the deal aren’t yet known, Charania’s reporting suggests a total value in the neighborhood of $66-68MM.

When Harden declined his option last week, reports at the time indicated that he planned to sign a new contract with the Sixers that included a lower first-year salary in order to help the team accommodate other roster moves.

Philadelphia has since used its full mid-level exception to sign P.J. Tucker and its bi-annual exception to sign Daniel House, hard-capping team salary at approximately $157MM for the season. Harden’s new deal should leave the 76ers with about $2MM in wiggle room below that hard cap, tweet Derek Bodner of The Daily Six.

According to Charania (Twitter link), Harden’s close relationships with key figures in the Sixers organization, including president of basketball operations Daryl Morey and minority owner Michael Rubin (who is selling his stake in the franchise but is expected to remain involved), were major factors in establishing trust between the two sides during negotiations.

There was a sense after Harden declined his option that he’d be rewarded with a long-term contract that would give him more total guaranteed money, but the one-plus-one structure will give him the chance to opt out and sign a new maximum-salary contract next summer. It will also give him veto power on any trade during the 2022/23 league year.

Harden, who was traded from Brooklyn to Philadelphia midway through the 2021/22 season, had a down year by his standards and was hampered by a hamstring injury. The 10-time All-Star finished the season with 22.0 PPG, 10.3 APG, and 7.7 RPG on .410/.330/.877 shooting in 65 total games (37.2 MPG) for the Nets and Sixers.

Charania reported last week that the former MVP has resumed his workout and on-court program much earlier than usual this offseason and has communicated to Sixers officials that he’s focused on winning a championship in 2023.

Leave a Comment