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  1. #1
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    Has Harden ever had a great team on the Rockets?

    Today as I watched the Rockets this was an interesting question to discuss.

    This is not a topic about how much credit/blame Harden should/shouldn't have for the team's success/lack of success. This is simply looking at his supporting cast and asking have the Rockets done a great job of surrounding him with talent?

    With Durant in OKC, LeBron in Cleveland, Davis in NO, and now Giannis with the Bucks, etc.... talking heads are constantly debating the surrounding team but not in Houston. Is this worth discussing?

  2. #2
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    i think the tmac rockets were better than any of hardens rockets tbh... They just play a system that looks amazing in the regular season but cant win in the playoffs. Its fun and it will get harden mvps but the playoffs are a different beast and as much as i use to argue for westy he just isnt a good fit with harden. The rockets i would love to see win to give the clippers or lakers a series but i wont be surprised if they lose to an okc team that really isnt very good.

    CP3 is showing that the problem is the system in houston and that is also partly on james harden. If there is a basketball god because of cp3/harden/westy/okc then okc wins the next game but me personally id rather see the rockets because the clippers/lakers will destroy okc.


    The thing that bothers me most is these idiots that love to use rings and winz but can watch performances after performances of a guy like tmac or a guy like cp3 just literally carry his team countless times with limited help and they get **** on for not having the goat coach/super team/top 5 players to carry them etc....

    Cp3 is a top 3 pg all time and him not winning a ring will hinder him which is stupid.
    Last edited by More-Than-Most; 09-01-2020 at 03:09 AM.

  3. #3
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    Yes he did. When CP3 was there his team was great and might have advanced past Golden State to the NBA Finals had CP3 not gotten injured in game 5. The pitiful performance by the Houston Rockets in the following two games just goes to show how little impact Harden had and how much more CP3 meant to the team even though his usage rating was significantly lower. Even look this year how much impact he has had on the Oklahoma City Thunder. As we speak, an old Chris Paul has just rallied his scrub filled Thunder team to a game 7 against Harden's Rockets with a far superior supporting cast. If that doesn't prove Harden's value, or lack there or, in comparison to greats like Chris Paul, I don't know what does. It's not all about raw stats people.

    Harden is all show no go. He has historically fallen apart in the post season with very high turnover games, missed shots in crunch time, as well as shooting disasters in games where he has shot far lower than 40% than he has had over 50%. The facts are indisputable. Without his ref-baiting and flopping in the regular season just don't translate well into the post season. Facts are facts. Harden is easily the most overrated player in the NBA today and his new running mate Russell Westbrook is a close second.
    Last edited by Romeo Naes; 09-01-2020 at 03:32 AM.

  4. #4
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    @MTM

    Well my intention like I said wasn't necessarily to debate the success of the system, just the talent.

    If you think Harden's play style and D'Antoni's system are the flaw, then eliminate them and replace them with a coach not named Popovich, Spo, or Carlisle and any player not LeBron, Durant or Kawhi from the last 8 years. Do you think any other combination of star and coach would have yielded better success?

    Even looking past this glaring idiotic no-big roster, even with Capella, these Rockets team's paper talent have been good at best but never great.
    Last edited by beasted86; 09-01-2020 at 03:49 AM.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Romeo Naes View Post
    Yes he did. When CP3 was there his team was great and might have advanced past Golden State to the NBA Finals had CP3 not gotten injured in game 5. The pitiful performance by the Houston Rockets in the following two games just goes to show how little impact Harden had and how much more CP3 meant to the team even though his usage rating was significantly lower. Even look this year how much impact he has had on the Oklahoma City Thunder. As we speak, an old Chris Paul has just rallied his scrub filled Thunder team to a game 7 against Harden's Rockets with a far superior supporting cast. If that doesn't prove Harden's value, or lack there or, in comparison to greats like Chris Paul, I don't know what does. It's not all about raw stats people.

    Harden is all show no go. He has historically fallen apart in the post season with very high turnover games, missed shots in crunch time, as well as shooting disasters in games where he has shot far lower than 40% than he has had over 50%. The facts are indisputable. Without his ref-baiting and flopping in the regular season just don't translate well into the post season. Facts are facts. Harden is easily the most overrated player in the NBA today and his new running mate Russell Westbrook is a close second.
    The Thunder are definitely not scrub filled. I definitely agree that Harden is supposed
    to be good enough to make up for a lot of this, but honestly like I said I don't want to make this only about Harden. Let's just plain look at paper talent. SGA+Adams+Schroeder+Gallinari is better than any 4 player combo on the Rockets. 3 of the 4 are well established veterans that CP3 has no credit whatsoever in helping them play any better than they've been their whole career. Yes, Westbrook is better than any of those guys mentioned, but the Rockets are totally top heavy. If Harden or Westbrook have a bad game they're done. They don't have the bigs to get offensive boards to give them extra possessions if they're having an off night, and the guys they have chucking a bunch of 3s means guys probably aren't drawing free throws.

    I don't mind anyone saying Harden is overrated, but I also want to have an open discussion on his roster over the years.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by beasted86 View Post
    The Thunder are definitely not scrub filled. I definitely agree that Harden is supposed
    to be good enough to make up for a lot of this, but honestly like I said I don't want to make this only about Harden. Let's just plain look at paper talent. SGA+Adams+Schroeder+Gallinari is better than any 4 player combo on the Rockets. 3 of the 4 are well established veterans that CP3 has no credit whatsoever in helping them play any better than they've been their whole career. Yes, Westbrook is better than any of those guys mentioned, but the Rockets are totally top heavy. If Harden or Westbrook have a bad game they're done. They don't have the bigs to get offensive boards to give them extra possessions if they're having an off night, and the guys they have chucking a bunch of 3s means guys probably aren't drawing free throws.

    I don't mind anyone saying Harden is overrated, but I also want to have an open discussion on his roster over the years.
    His roster those two seasons with CP3 were solid championship caliber contenders to win a title. In 2015, with Dwight they had a shot again to pass the Golden State Warriors who were still very young and inexperienced. Harden just layed an egg in game six and had 14 turnovers and played piss poorly. I even think they gave him a break on a few of those turnovers and didn't record a few of them; most likely out of pitty. So, in 2015, they were weak contenders to win a title. They were definitely let down by Harden who got pretty much schooled by the far superior Steph Curry. LMAO at whoever said Harden deserved the MVP over him that year. Just look at that WCF series as a prime example of who the superior player was. So, if you want my opinion, He had legit contention squads for about three years. Had he not been such a stat sheet stuffer and controlled by his hubris in 2019, they easily could have beaten the undermanned Golden State Warriors and won the title. Harden completely disrupted the chemistry the team had the year previous because he fell in love with his own legend in CP3's absence and could not adjust when CP3 returned later that season ready to make a post season run. Dude is one of the most selfish to a fault players I have ever seen and by far most delusional with absolutely no understanding of team basketball or self awareness. Had be had the slightest idea of a team concept, he would have gotten back in the groove of what they had the year previous and built on it with a healthy CP3 and recognized the contributions and impact that CP3 brought to the team. You think he would have gotten a clue in the last two games of the 2018 Western Conference Finals.

  7. #7
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    Also, to answer your other question, no his team is not all that great this year and his heavily reliant on Westbrook as a number 2 option. The fact also that an old man CP3, who is perhaps now the oldest player in the league now that Vinsanity finally retired, is able to make that roster on Oklahoma City that good and able to take them to a game seven is proof positive that Harden really screwed up the chances he had at winning a title. Perhaps even a chance this year had he taken the sage like wisdom of his elder statesmen Chris Paul and not been so focused on his personal stats and rather on the good of the team. Chris Paul was amazing in the fourth quarter of tonights game. I have never seen Harden come even close to having that good of a game in the post season against a evenly matched up opponent. So, I would say that I did exaggerate on the fact that they are scrubs on OKS, just not all that top notch would be more fair. I would say that Harden, who is supposed to be one of the best players in the league (LMFAO) is getting out done by I believe the current oldest player in the league in his 16th season with an overall slightly weaker roster. I think that would be a fair assessment to make. Though it is not a total insult to say CP3 is out shinning Harden and is far more valuable than him to the overall team concept of most any team. I believe that CP3 is one of the most underrated players of his era much like Chauncey Billups was and is the best player to never win a ring in the history of the league. Dude may be a prick in real life (allegedly), but his game is sick. Mad respect for his game.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by beasted86 View Post
    @MTM

    Well my intention like I said wasn't necessarily to debate the success of the system, just the talent.

    If you think Harden's play style and D'Antoni's system are the flaw, then eliminate them and replace them with a coach not named Popovich, Spo, or Carlisle and any player not LeBron, Durant or Kawhi from the last 8 years. Do you think any other combination of star and coach would have yielded better success?

    Even looking past this glaring idiotic no-big roster, even with Capella, these Rockets team's paper talent have been good at best but never great.
    i love dantonis system being a nash fan.... it worked and should have led to a title but it cant work now... there is plenty of coaches that could really help the rockets and harden including pop/kerr but even guys who i hate like brett brown.... brown to me could do wonders with a like guy harden... I am not a brown fan to say the least but brown also didnt have the best around him at pg... meaning a pg who could shoot

    maybe ask war but as much as i dislike brown.. brown with that rockets team with cp3 and harden would be a better playoff team then any team dantoni coaches.... its mostly the dantoni system and how much they rely on harden. It wont win anything. I hope it does because i am a harden fan but it wont work.

    if i had a coach right now that could really help the rockets it would be lue or jackson.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by More-Than-Most View Post
    i love dantonis system being a nash fan.... it worked and should have led to a title but it cant work now... there is plenty of coaches that could really help the rockets and harden including pop/kerr but even guys who i hate like brett brown.... brown to me could do wonders with a like guy harden... I am not a brown fan to say the least but brown also didnt have the best around him at pg... meaning a pg who could shoot

    maybe ask war but as much as i dislike brown.. brown with that rockets team with cp3 and harden would be a better playoff team then any team dantoni coaches.... its mostly the dantoni system and how much they rely on harden. It wont win anything. I hope it does because i am a harden fan but it wont work.

    if i had a coach right now that could really help the rockets it would be lue or jackson.
    Any coach that could reign in Harden and get him to utilize the talents of his teammates more and force him to play some D would suffice.

    Is there such a man in existence?

  10. #10
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    I guess great can be subjective. But he has a solid cast around him this season.

    Westbrook, Gordon, Covington, Tucker, Rivers, McLemore, Green, House, Carroll, Sefolosha, Caboclo, Mbah a Moute.

    Sent from my LM-G820 using Tapatalk

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Romeo Naes View Post
    His roster those two seasons with CP3 were solid championship caliber contenders to win a title. In 2015, with Dwight they had a shot again to pass the Golden State Warriors who were still very young and inexperienced. Harden just layed an egg in game six and had 14 turnovers and played piss poorly. I even think they gave him a break on a few of those turnovers and didn't record a few of them; most likely out of pitty. So, in 2015, they were weak contenders to win a title. They were definitely let down by Harden who got pretty much schooled by the far superior Steph Curry. LMAO at whoever said Harden deserved the MVP over him that year. Just look at that WCF series as a prime example of who the superior player was. So, if you want my opinion, He had legit contention squads for about three years. Had he not been such a stat sheet stuffer and controlled by his hubris in 2019, they easily could have beaten the undermanned Golden State Warriors and won the title. Harden completely disrupted the chemistry the team had the year previous because he fell in love with his own legend in CP3's absence and could not adjust when CP3 returned later that season ready to make a post season run. Dude is one of the most selfish to a fault players I have ever seen and by far most delusional with absolutely no understanding of team basketball or self awareness. Had be had the slightest idea of a team concept, he would have gotten back in the groove of what they had the year previous and built on it with a healthy CP3 and recognized the contributions and impact that CP3 brought to the team. You think he would have gotten a clue in the last two games of the 2018 Western Conference Finals.
    CP3 had a few rosters with paper talent as good as any team in the NBA and didn't do any better than Harden is doing now. So before we run off the rails here let's put it all in perspective.

    I also believe that if his current team was in a position to be contenders and the pressure was on, his abrasive leadership would pop up as a discussion topic.

    2015 is probably the best defensive cast Harden has had in his Houston career, but Beverly going down with a season ending injury, Terrence Jones basically never playing, and then Josh Smith crashing into Howard's knee in game 1 of an already injury riddled season for Dwight ended any chances of an upset. They clearly lacked a true #2 to pick things up if Harden had a bad game. They just ran into an offensive juggernaut and were exposed for their lack of consistent scoring and play making.

  12. #12
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    So many blatantly ignorant things in this thread already that I don't have time to touch on (T-Mac's Rockets were better, it's Harden's fault the system fails, all he does if flop). All of these statements are just so very, very wrong.

    But I'll skip them all to just say "Yes, Harden has played on great teams." The 2017-18 team and (to a lesser extent) the 2018-19 squad were both great, title-contending teams with fairly deep rosters. The problem is those great teams also happened to coincide with one of the single most talented teams (if not THE most talented teams) in NBA history. If Paul doesn't go down in Game 5, we'd look at that team in 10 years as among some of the all-time greats.

    Others brought up 2014-15, but that team is not remotely as good as you're making them out to be. Consider that outside of Dwight, the third, fourth and fifth best guys on that team were Ariza, Josh Smith and Corey Brewer. Eww... They were lucky to get past the Clippers that year, and a vastly superior, far deeper Warriors team made quick work of them. People will point out Harden's awful performance in the final game, but they were the inferior team by a mile that season. I never thought they were going to win that series.

    The frustrating thing about the team this year is I actually think this squad has a chance to be special and something different, but Westbrook is not thee same guy we saw back in February when he was dominating pre-coronavirus. Also, Eric Gordon has taken a massive step back from the guy we saw at the peak of the Harden/Paul era—he's garbage. If those two guys could be the players they're certainly capable of, I think this team has the chance to be at least better than the 2014-15 squad.

    More than likely, though, I just don't see Harden winning a title in Houston. 2017-18 was their year, but the basketball gods felt differently.
    Last edited by mightybosstone; 09-01-2020 at 11:16 AM.


  13. #13
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    I think any team built around Harden's strengths is going to struggle. He's had very talented players around him, but because of the system the margin is very small.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scoots View Post
    I think any team built around Harden's strengths is going to struggle. He's had very talented players around him, but because of the system the margin is very small.
    I don't think that's fair. You just need guys who can hit shots. Whether it's 2s or 3s is irrelevant. In 2014-15, that was not a good 3-point shooting team. They had guys who could hit shots, but ultimately they were able to get big contributions from Smith and Brewer in big moments, and Dwight was solid in the playoffs. I look at this team this year, and they're at their best when their offense has variety with Westbrook, Harden and Gordon attacking the basket, like it did in Game 5, not when they're necessarily just hitting a bunch of 3s like they did in Game 4 before they went cold in the 4th.

    In 2017-18, they had that one stretch in Game 7 against Golden State where no one could buy a basket. Everyone brings up that as an example that a team that shoots primarily 3-pointers and jump shooters can't win a ring. Except they conveniently gloss over the fact that the team they lost to is primarily made up of 3-point shooters and floor spacing. From 2014-15 to 2018-19, Golden State was 2nd, 1st, 4th, 8th and 3rd in 3-pointers made per game. That's not a coincidence. Take a look at the last decade, and pretty much all the dominant teams are teams among the top 10 in 3-point attempts and makes.

    Just because the Rockets shoot a higher volume of 3s doesn't mean they're incapable of playing a different style of basketball. Also, Harden isn't the coach or GM, so to say it's the fault of the system shouldn't fall on him. Look at his game—because he dominates in isolation, you could put him on pretty much any team and he'd thrive. Look at how Durant still produced in Golden State despite being more isolation dependent.


  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by mightybosstone View Post
    I don't think that's fair. You just need guys who can hit shots. Whether it's 2s or 3s is irrelevant. In 2014-15, that was not a good 3-point shooting team. They had guys who could hit shots, but ultimately they were able to get big contributions from Smith and Brewer in big moments, and Dwight was solid in the playoffs. I look at this team this year, and they're at their best when their offense has variety with Westbrook, Harden and Gordon attacking the basket, like it did in Game 5, not when they're necessarily just hitting a bunch of 3s like they did in Game 4 before they went cold in the 4th.

    In 2017-18, they had that one stretch in Game 7 against Golden State where no one could buy a basket. Everyone brings up that as an example that a team that shoots primarily 3-pointers and jump shooters can't win a ring. Except they conveniently gloss over the fact that the team they lost to is primarily made up of 3-point shooters and floor spacing. From 2014-15 to 2018-19, Golden State was 2nd, 1st, 4th, 8th and 3rd in 3-pointers made per game. That's not a coincidence. Take a look at the last decade, and pretty much all the dominant teams are teams among the top 10 in 3-point attempts and makes.

    Just because the Rockets shoot a higher volume of 3s doesn't mean they're incapable of playing a different style of basketball. Also, Harden isn't the coach or GM, so to say it's the fault of the system shouldn't fall on him. Look at his game—because he dominates in isolation, you could put him on pretty much any team and he'd thrive. Look at how Durant still produced in Golden State despite being more isolation dependent.
    Any time a team has one player doing as much as Harden does it means that if he has an off game the rest of the team has to start doing something they haven't been doing when Harden is on. Every great team will suffer with the loss of their superstar, but Harden's at his best when nearly everything runs through him and the system is built around him so the movement and schemes are to create space for him while trying to get shooters open around him, and without him they have to significantly change the roles and scheme on offense.

    The same is true of LeBron for most of his career, he's just been on some teams that are so talented they could adjust/overcome and LeBron has had freakishly little variation in his game to game play ... he's pretty much always great. When LeBron has slumped his teams lose fairly regularly without a heroic response by a teammate.

    I suspect if the Rockets next year played 15 games with harden, then lost him for 45, then had him again to close out the regular season they would then be a much better team because they would have had to develop a system without him in it, and they would be more prepared to take advantage of their talent.

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