Tyrese Maxey threw a cushion after James Harden yelled at him on the 76ers bench during their Game 6 loss to the Miami Heat.
The Philadelphia 76ers are officially out of the playoffs after suffering a disappointing 99-90 loss to the Miami Heat in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference semi-finals.
The 76ers had title aspirations after landing James Harden as part of the Ben Simmons trade. However, the team and head coach Doc Rivers failed to find a winning formula in a relatively short space of time.
Harden endures yet another rough night in playoffs
The 76ers struggled all night on the offensive end. James Harden was brought in as the Sixers No.2 option yet the ghosts of his playoff past were on show for all to see in Game 6.
Harden went 4-of-9 from the field with 11 points, nine assists and four rebounds. He only had two shots in the second half of the game – one in the third quarter and one in the fourth quarter – shocking for someone who’s meant to be an explosive offensive weapon capable of taking games over.
Even Joel Embiid weighed in on Harden’s efforts after the game: “Since we got him, everybody expected the Houston James Harden,” Embiid said (per ESPN). “But that’s not who he is any more. He’s more of a playmaker. I thought, at times, he could have been, as all of us could have been, more aggressive.”
Tyrese Maxey throws cushion after James Harden yells at him on Sixers bench
Tensions were obviously running high among the 76ers as they faced playoff elimination. During a fourth quarter timeout, with the Heat leading 80-63, Tyrese Maxey and James Harden appeared get into it on the Philly bench.
Harden can be seen sitting down next to Maxey before they exchange words. Harden appears to yell at Tyrese before Maxey gets up and throws a cushion on the floor in frustration.
Check out the bench incident below:
Not that long ago, fans thought the pair had another bench incident – however that turned out not to be the case.
Harden on plans for the future
Harden turns 33 this summer and has a $47 million player option this off-season he will have to opt into before 29 June.
While he has leverage and could decline to sign elsewhere, Harden did give early indications he plans to stay with the franchise next season.
“I’ll be here,” he said in his post-game news conference. “(I’ll do) whatever allows this team to grow and get better and do the necessary things to win and compete at the highest level. Whatever it takes to help this team grow and put us up there with the best of them.”
It promises to be a long off-season for the former MVP with plenty of reflection, and criticism, waiting in the wings.
Will Harden ever win a championship? Do you think he can succeed in Philly? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!