Justin Termine explains slight towards Rockets’ James Harden

SiriusXM's Justin Termine (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for SiriusXM)
SiriusXM's Justin Termine (Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for SiriusXM) /

Sirius XM radio host Justin Termine announced that he voted Houston Rockets star James Harden on the All-NBA second team.

When the All-NBA rosters were announced, Houston Rockets fans anticipated whether James Harden would land on the All-NBA first team, or whether he would be snubbed, as he has often been in the past. Harden didn’t make any of the All-NBA teams during the 2015-16 season, despite leading the league in points scored and minutes played, and finishing sixth-best in assists.

Harden carried the Rockets to postseason play that season, as they limped in with a 41-41 record after making a coaching change mid-season. Harden has also been slighted of multiple MVP awards throughout his career, as he’s had a greater impact on his team than several other MVP award winners in past years, most notably Stephen Curry and Giannis Antetokounmpo, considering what they had around them compared to Harden.

Harden was named an MVP Finalist yet again during the 2019-20 season, and led the league in scoring for the third consecutive season, posting averages of 34.3 points per game, despite taking less shots than the 2018-19 season in which he went on his historic scoring streak.

Harden finished second in player efficiency and led the league in total steals, while also upping his play on the defensive end, which earned him votes for the All-Defensive team. In spite of all of Harden’s accomplishments this season, it doesn’t seem like all of the voters took notice.

Here’s the All-NBA Teams: pic.twitter.com/CvmqaaVBIp

— Keith Pompey (@PompeyOnSixers) September 16, 2020

As outlined above, Harden received nine second-team votes and two third-team votes, which is further proof of how the bar has steadily risen due to Harden’s consistency over the course of his Houston Rockets tenure.

Termine explains slight towards Rockets’ James Harden

One of the two voters who selected Harden for the second-team has come forward and identified himself, as Sirius XM Radio’s Justin Termine stated that he not only listed Harden on the second team, but that he also voted former Houston Rockets guard Chris Paul on the first-team in Harden’s place, and explained his rationale on NBA Today.

“I had Chris Paul over James Harden. I just thought he had a bigger impact on winning. People are flipping out but the bottom line is Harden shot 40 percent from January first on out. For more than half of the season Harden shot 40 percent.

And I thought Chris Paul lifted his team more than Harden. It’s not all about putting up individual numbers, it’s your impact on winning. And I thought Chris Paul had a bigger impact on winning than James Harden.”

Termine’s argument somewhat contradicts itself, as he stated that it’s not about numbers, but he pointed out Harden’s shooting percentage from January through the end of the regular season. Harden also led the league in total win shares, which is defined as an estimate of the number of wins contributed by a player, which would seem to be a more accurate gauge of the “impact on winning” as Termine coined it.

Termine also didn’t select Rockets guard Russell Westbrook on any of the All-NBA teams, and his total selections are listed below:

First Team:

  • Giannis Antetokounmpo
  • LeBron James
  • Nikola Jokic
  • Luka Doncic
  • Chris Paul

Second Team:

  • Anthony Davis
  • Rudy Gobert
  • James Harden
  • Damian Lillard
  • Khris Middleton

Third Team:

  • Jayson Tatum
  • Pascal Siakam
  • Bam Adebayo
  • Ben Simmons
  • Jimmy Butler

Termine has feuded with Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey in the past, as Morey referred to Termine as “Ricky Bobby” earlier in the 2019-20 season, prompting Termine to state that he was being misrepresented by Morey’s moniker for him.

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Termine concluded the segment by stating that he’s unbothered by the backlash he’s received, as he knows he won’t lose his status as a voter, as several have been clamoring for. For that reason, we should expect more of these takes from him, as they are certain to continue.