James Harden: Kevin McHale Is A Clown


"All I can do is talk about my experience, and he's been unbelievably great". To downplay my name like that shows his character. I usually don't go back and forth on social media with anybody or with interviews, but it's time to stand up for myself, and there it is.

Voters had a good reason for overlooking Harden, though, as Houston went just 41-41 and nearly missed the playoffs one season after advancing to the Western Conference Finals. "It shows why type of person he is".

Harden seemed quite offended after McHale made comments regarding his leadership qualities during the week.

If Kevin McHale is a clown, what does that make James Harden? He tried being a leader past year and doing that stuff, I think Chris Paul is going to help him do that stuff and get back to just hoop and play. I think (the Rockets' offseason addition of star point guard) Chris Paul is going to help him just kind of get back into just being able to hoop and play and stuff like that.

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He then added, "But on every team, you have to have a voice". I lived through it, believe me everybody in the locker room did this [forehead slap]. Like, you've got to be kidding me!

McHale is the winningest coach in that franchises history and led that team to its first Western Conference Finals in 18 years, but was sacked just six months later and eleven games into the 2015-2016 season after the team started the year 4-7.

Harden took multiple shots at McHale's character, saying McHale would say one thing to his face and something else now later on national television. So I just think Chris Paul will be good for James Harden. "I'm just here to do my job, compete at the highest level that I can". Chris Paul is not going to, you know, when he does that stab in the backcourt, doesn't get the foul, looking at the referee, not running back, Chris Paul is going to jump his butt. "And I'm not that type of person". I don't operate that way. "I don't say things to somebody behind their back or tell them one thing and go on air and say another thing".

Asked by a reporter if he thought McHale was bitter, Harden agreed.

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Both men have said their piece, we'll see if they can rise above now or if they will keep it going. "And he's the same way".

Harden, 28, was the third overall pick of the 2009 draft, and has been selected as an All-Star the past five seasons. He regularly reads books on leadership with Jason Biles, the Rockets' director of performance rehabilitation and associate athletic trainer.

Harden is at least part of the reason McHale - a Hall of Fame player - is no longer in Houston as the coach. "He tried being a leader a year ago, tried doing all that stuff". "I asked him to be the point guard". I asked a lot of him a year ago. I asked him to talk in D. I don't want to discount all the incredible things he did as a player as our "points guard", creating more scoring opportunities than any other player in a single season.

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