Harden doesn’t care about fans and he never has. He always puts himself first and makes no bones about this. But when he angers fanbases it creates a toxic atmosphere for everybody, including his teammates. Harden ruined it for them when he engaged in a contract holdout in 2023.
“James Harden can’t come back to Philly, the fans aren’t going to have it,” Charles Barkley said (via Bleacher Report). “When you play for a team, you have an obligation to the fanbase. He didn’t show up to work for 10 days. You can’t just take time off because you’re unhappy and you’re not getting traded.”