Man, I actually feel bad for James Harden here. The (ludicrously belated) NBA Awards were a special event to celebrate greatness, and - despite being one of the most deserving attendees - he still managed to turn himself into the punchline. We seemingly split hairs on the Russell Westbrook/James Harden MVP debate all year, and on the night when it would finally be put to rest the inevitable runner-up gave us a glimpse into why he should never be considered more than that.
One of the highlights of the (long overdue) NBA Awards was listening to Russell Westbrook pour his heart out while thanking every single person that has ever even visited Oklahoma City as if he were trying to send a not-so-subliminal message to Kevin Durant. Meanwhile, the guy who was two gift-wrapped rebounds per game away from dramatically enhancing the value of his resume was basically drooling on himself while interjecting his way through one of the the easiest questions ever asked of an NBA player.
I mean, holy hell, could James Harden have done a better job reminding us of the things that have sabotaged his career recently? Did you see that dumbfounded look on his face as he stared at Nicki Minaj's surgically enhanced bust like it was an illusion and blinking would have made it disappear forever? I imagine that's the same vulnerability to high maintenance celebrities who have enough baggage to sink the Titanic and enough well known sexual partners to field a competitive sports team that had him wrapped around Khloe Kardashian pinky instead of picking up a single weight during the offseason.
Those uhhh's and ummm's that quickly sent Drake into recovery mode might as well have been mind boggling passes that bounced helplessly into the front row because they were reminiscent of the same type of ineptitude that James Harden displayed the last time he was put on the spot. Thank God he didn't win MVP or his acceptance speech would have made the "I like turtles" kid seem articulate.
There's not many things that can put the shackles on one of the most versatile scorers in NBA history, but prima donna pussy and playoff-like pressure sit alone at the top of that short list.