How did James Harden perform in his rookie year?


James Harden is a superstar in the NBA and showed flashes of good play even in his rookie season

James Harden is one of the biggest NBA superstars of the past decade, showing promise even in his rookie year. The Oklahoma City Thunder drafted Harden with the third pick in the 2009 NBA Draft. This was after he had a good sophomore season with Arizona State University averaging 20.1 points and 5.6 rebounds and 4.2 assists.

Most draft boards had him being drafted in the top-5 of the 2009 draft. This was due to his obvious talent as a scorer and his high basketball IQ.

James Harden no beard
James Harden when he was a rookie with Oklahoma City Thunder. (Image: The Score)

James Hardens rookie year was not the most exciting but he showed flashes of good play. Harden was a role player during his rookie year and averaged 9.9 points, 3.2 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game. He was named to the All-Rookie Second Team for his accomplishments. He was playing behind All-Star Kevin Durant and an emerging Russell Westbrook.

The Oklahoma City Thunder made the playoffs that year largely behind the play of Kevin Durant. Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers eliminated the Thunder in the first round of the playoffs in 6 games. Harden played off the bench during the playoffs and averaged 7.7 points, 1.8 assists and 2.5 rebounds per game.

Has James Harden ever won and NBA Championship?

James Harden has never won an NBA Championship. The furthest he’s gone in the playoffs is the 2012 NBA Finals with the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder were defeated by the Miami Heat in 5 games.

James Harden
December 19, 2019, Los Angeles, California, USA: James Harden 13 of the Houston Rockets during warmups prior to their NBA, Basketball Herren, USA game with the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday December 19, 2019 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. Clippers lose to Raptors, 117-122. JAVIER ROJAS/PI Clippers lose to Raptors, 117-122 – ZUMAp124 20191219_zaa_p124_004 Copyright: xJavierxRojasx

During his time with the Houston Rockets Harden regularly made it to the playoffs. He only made it as far as the Western Conference Finals. Poor supporting cast and injured teammates are what cost Harden an NBA title. Now with the Philadelphia 76ers, Harden may have his best chance to win an NBA title playing with Joel Embiid.

Read More: