James Harden’s quest to rebuild his confidence and get again to his regular self on the hardwood goes to take time.
It was one other difficult night for Harden during the Nets’ 106-93 defeat to the Heat at Barclays Center Wednesday night. The guard completed with 14 points on 4-of-12 shooting total and 3-of-8 from three to go with seven assists and 7 boards in 36 minutes. His play in the second quarter when he scored 11 of these 14 factors did present a spark in any other case listless efficiency. Steve Nash thinks he’s seeing positive signs via the cracks.
“I feel James is showing indicators of getting his rhythm again. Like I keep saying, it’s not a straightforward process. It’s going to take him a while, must be patient with him,” stated Nash after Wednesday’s loss. “He had some incredible stretches to build on.”
There’s no secret Harden has struggled with his mobility via the Nets’ first 5 games (2-3) due to the lingering effects of his Grade 2 hamstring pressure — an injury in the second half of the 2020-21 regular season which severely limited his play in the second-round playoff sequence towards the Bucks. That lack of mobility as well as other factors has resulted in a lesser Harden averaging 16.6 points per game this season — a big drop-off from his scoring production final season (24.6 points).
Harden, after all, can also be suffering via a big drop-off in journeys to the charity strike (3.0), but he doesn’t view the NBA’s modifications in officiating as a big purpose for the drop-off. Harden hyperlinks his early-season struggles to his offseason-long hamstring rehab that prevented him from practicing or ramping up for on-court competition.
“[I’m] getting extra confident, being aggressive and it’s getting higher every single game. As a lot as I wish to get again to 30 and 40 factors, I can’t try this. As a lot as I wish to, clearly, I’d like to,” Harden stated. “I had no opportunities to play pickup or nothing this summer season. The whole lot was rehab for 3 months, from a Grade 2 harm that occurred 3 times in a single season.
“So that is my fifth or sixth game of trying to only play with competitors and play towards someone else. And as a lot as I wish to rush the method and be again to hooping and killing, take your time. But this may make me stronger at the end of the season. So I simply embrace moments like this and issues like this. And I just preserve pushing via it.”
The method of regaining confidence post-injury could be very new for Harden, who missed a career-high 28 games final season (31 including playoffs). Before final yr, when his conditioning wasn’t nice, Harden had been one of many NBA’s most sturdy superstars all through his 13-year NBA career. It’s an attribute of his recreation he takes pride in. But backside line: the 6’5” guard hasn’t performed persistently since March 31 — the sport he initially suffered his hamstring pressure in a recreation against his former team, the Rockets.