Los Angeles Clippers reportedly retain James Harden on absurd contract

Los angeles Clippers' James Harden
Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Clippers are on the verge of losing nine-time All-Star forward Paul George in NBA free agency.

George opted out of his contract earlier this week and is being linked to the Philadelphia 76ers back east.

For Los Angeles, this came after it was unwilling to work out a trade with the Golden State Warriors that would have brought back young players and draft assets for George. It was a surprising decision.

The good news for fans in Southern California? At least one of the Clippers future Hall of Famers is returning. The bad news? It comes at a high cost.

Shams Charania of The Athletic reports that Los Angeles has signed star guard James Harden to a two-year contract worth a whopping $70 million. It also includes a player option for the second year.

Related: Updated Los Angeles Clippers news and rumors

Los Angeles Clippers pay premium to retain James Harden in NBA free agency

NBA Playoffs: James Harden, Los Angeles Clippers
Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles knew that it could not lose both George and Harden this summer. It needed to retain at least oen to team up with Kawhi Leonard moving forward. Even then, that might not be enough to compete in the top-heavy Western Conference.

Set to enter his Age-35 season, Harden is not the same player he used to be. But he can still contribute as a secondary player.

In his first season with the Clippers, Harden averaged 16.6 points to go with 5.1 rebouns and 8.5 assists while shooting 43% from distance.

Mentioned in this article:

More About: