Mike D’Antoni hoping James Harden’s latest heroics build case for MVP
Only days after Houston Rockets superstar James Harden was often denied the chance at MVP candidacy by critics and pundits, The Beard put on an absolute show, bringing his Houston Rockets back from a 20-point deficit to beat the Golden State Warriors in overtime. Head coach Mike D’Antoni is hoping his latest line of 44 points, 15 assists and 10 rebounds, laced with an impossible game-winning trey, can boost Harden’s chances at becoming a serious candidate.
“I’ve run out of things to say,” D’Antoni said sarcastically, having made the case for his star shooting guard plenty of times before, according to Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle. “Maybe they’ll consider him [for] the MVP race, maybe. I don’t know. But just maybe some people watched the game tonight.”
Harden hit a glorious game-winning three-pointer with Klay Thompson and Draymond Green draped all over him, finding just a whisker of air space to send a wing jumper into the basket. Ideally not the best look by fundamentalism but a shot D’Antoni will take any day of the week.
“It’s always a good look,” D’Antoni said. “I trust him totally and he’s proven it over and over. We have the best offensive player in the world so try not to get in his way.”
Harden could do no wrong, despite shooting only 13-of-32 from the field (40.6 percent) and hoisting a whopping 23 three-pointers in the game.
In this case, the ends justified the means, as Harden’s persistence despite being out of rhythm in the first half was what actually propelled his team to an unlikely win and ultimately boosted his chances at crowning himself MVP for a second consecutive year.
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