James Harden, like most pro athletes, is always working on his game to stay in shape over the offseason. Sometimes, that even means embarrassing kids at a summer basketball camp.
James Harden is one of the best players off the dribble in the NBA. In fact, he is the best one-on-one player, leading the league with 1,415 total isolation points last season, 1,099 more than the second best isolation scorer.
Harden isn’t necessarily extremely quick or explosive like his new back court teammate Russell Westbrook. What Harden lacks in outright speed, he makes up for with an effortless jump-shot, unstoppable step-back and elite ball-handling skills.
The Beard’s handle makes him nearly impossible to stay in front of, and sometimes, his defenders end up on their back side before they can even realize what happened. Just ask Wesley Johnson after he was dropped by Harden back in the 2017-18 season, sending Twitter into a frenzy.
Sometimes, Harden even embarrasses amateur basketball players. Who can forget when Harden, back in 2016, tossed the ball over a kid’s head, pretended to continue dribbling, and then ran around his helpless defender for a tomahawk jam?
Now, Harden has added another hilarious ankle breaker to his collection. At Harden’s camp, a kid challenged his basketball hero to a one-on-one game, a challenge he probably now regrets.
Not only did Harden nutmeg the kid, but he then brought the ball back out and proceeded to break the kid’s ankles a second time, sending him down to one knee and finished the move with his signature left-handed tomahawk.
Of course, having dozens of children going nuts in the background made the crossover even better and made the fan wearing his red Harden jersey even more embarrassed. But he shouldn’t feel too bad, as the Beard has done the same thing to several professional basketball players.
Once the NBA season starts again in October, hopefully we’ll see another viral ankle-breaker from James Harden that will be added to his career highlight reel.