NBA Fines Harden $100k for Daryl Morey Comments, Player's Association Comes To His Defense

John Simmons | August 23, 2023
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The NBA got wind of James Harden’s disrespectful comments toward Philadelphia 76ers team president Daryl Morey and said they’d seen enough.

The league fined the disgruntled superstar $100,000 for what it is calling “public trade demands” after Harden used part of the Q&A time at an Adidas event in China to gripe about how Morey apparently didn’t do enough to work out a trade and that he never wanted to be on a team that hired Morey:

“Daryl Morey is a liar and I will never be a part of an organization that he’s a part of. Let me say that again: Daryl Morey is a liar and I will never be a part of an organization that he’s a part of.”

The league’s statement on the matter read:

“Harden has been fined $100,000 by the NBA for public comments on August 14 and 17 indicating that he would not perform the services called for under his player contract unless traded to another team.

“The league’s investigation, which included an interview of Harden, confirmed that these comments referenced Harden’s belief that the 76ers would not accommodate his request to be traded.”

If the NBA - which lets its superstars get away with a lot - felt a need to discipline Harden, you know the point guard crossed a line. This seems like a pretty straightforward and fitting response for Harden’s actions, which were both immature and meant to endear himself to a communist nation.

Even so, the National Basketball Players Association (NBPA) is coming to Harden’s defense, saying that they believe such comments aren’t a problem at all:

“We respectfully disagree with the league’s decision to discipline James Harden for recent comments he made, which we believe do not violate the rule against public trade demands. We intend to file a grievance and have the matter heard by our Arbitrator.”

Even if the NBPA is able to win this argument, the whole chain of events is classic Harden behavior. I could explain how, but I’ll let an all-time great like Scott Van Pelt educate you instead:

It looks like Harden needs an attitude adjustment more than a new city to play for. Maybe this fine will be the first step in that process.

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