NBA News: James Harden Debuts New One-Legged Shot In Preseason Game

James Harden during an NBA game
Ezra Shaw / Getty Images

James Harden is always looking to improve his game in the offseason. He has been a dominant force for the Houston Rockets since his arrival in 2012, earning plaudits for his offensive prowess and versatility as a scorer. Harden has continuously added new moves to expand his bag of tricks as an isolation scorer, although some have received mixed reviews among fans.

During the offseason, Harden revealed that he was developing a new move that would catch the league by surprise. Many clips surfaced of Harden utilizing the creative step-back against fellow NBA players in open runs. After teasing it throughout the summer on social media, Harden has officially put the league on notice, per Bleacher Report. It didn’t take him long to debut the move as Harden unleashed his first attempt during the Houston Rockets’ first preseason game against the Shanghai Sharks.

It was certainly a unique take on the step-back which Harden has already mastered by now. As the defender pressed him, Harden hopped to the side and launched a one-legged three-point shot. Although he came up short, the move generated plenty of buzz in the Toyota Center. It’s unlikely to be the last we see of it as Harden is determined to make it one of his go-to options going forward.

Given the degree of difficulty of Harden’s improved step-back, he may only use it when there are no other available alternatives. If it turns out to be a success, then many players will probably follow suit by taking a page out of Harden’s book. The move is nearly impossible to defend if properly executed, as the offensive player creates enough separation to find an open look.

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At first glance, the move looks like a travel but Harden has assured critics that it’s perfectly legal. Every summer, the 2018 NBA Most Valuable Player has added a new shot to his arsenal to make him an even bigger threat on the court. With the arrival of new teammate Russell Westbrook, the Rockets are in a great position to contend this year. In fact, Harden has vowed to take “all the blame” if the Rockets fail to capture the NBA championship, as previously reported by The Inquisitr.

Harden will need more assistance than ever to conquer the Western Conference. As impressive as his latest move appears to be, it may not be enough to push the Rockets past the Denver Nuggets, Golden State Warriors, or the new-look Los Angeles teams, the Lakers and the Clippers.