…er have seen someone put up 30/5/5. Harden had 36/7/8, clearing those benchmarks by a sidestep, and he did it with the fourth-best true shooting of anyone in the group. This was not Kobe or Pistol Pete chucking his way to 30ppg. James Harden just had one of the best o…
I’m not going to say Harden doesn’t belong on the first team, because he’s a great player without cheating the game.
But when you get 11 free throws per game by flopping and pushing off on every play, that statistic has to have an asterisk the size of a porcupine. He shot a below league average .442 FG% and a slightly above league average of .368 3P%. Without all those free throw points, Harden’s scoring efficiency would drop to 1.08.
Only three players in history have had more 4-point plays in their career than Harden was awarded this season. He got two and a half times more of these plays than Stephen Curry, who gets knocked down on almost every play. This is a statistical anomaly that can only be explained by how much Harden manipulates the refs with his dirty tricks.
And now he and his team are complaining about the calls.