After an impressive 2017-18 NBA season, Houston Rockets shooting guard James Harden finally wins his first Most Valuable Player award. On Monday night, “The Beard” came up on stage without having any speech prepared for winning the top individual award.
James Harden went speechless at first before words started coming out from his mouth, narrating his journey in the last four years in the league. He also gave a funny explanation of why he came to the event unprepared.
“Honestly, because I didn’t know,” Harden said on why he didn’t have any speech prepared, via ESPN. “You know, I felt like last year I should have won as well, so I didn’t see a difference between last year and this year. If I won it, then I was going to go off the top and try to, you know, show my appreciation to everybody helping me along the way. Give respect and pay my dues.”
James Harden said that the performance he showed this season was no different than last year where he ended up being beaten by Oklahoma City Thunder Russell Westbrook for the 2017 NBA MVP award. Before being named as the 2018 NBA MVP, Harden was in a tough battle with Cleveland Cavaliers superstar LeBron James.
Unlike Harden who missed 10 games last season, James played all 82-regular season games and singlehandedly led the Cavaliers to the NBA Finals. However, Harden finished the season as the league’s top scorer, averaging 30.4 points, and helped the Rockets establish a franchise record of 65 victories. Despite his achievements, the 28-year-old shooting guard decided not to expect anything in order to avoid disappointments, and it is the major reason why he didn’t have any speech at all.
Now that he wins an MVP award, James Harden’s next goal is to claim his first NBA championship title next season. Harden and the Rockets are expected to be busy this offseason in trying to improve their current roster. The Rockets are reportedly one of the NBA teams who will go after LeBron James in free agency.
However, before chasing James, they will first need to negotiate with Chris Paul, who is also set to become an unrestricted free agent in July. Paul is a huge part of the Rockets’ recent success, and most people believe that the outcome of the Western Conference finals would be different if the veteran point guard didn’t suffer a hamstring injury. Paul is expected to play a major role in convincing James to form Houston’s “Big Three” with Harden next season.