The Beard, as he is most affectionately referred to by his fans and lovers of the game of basketball, James Harden is most certainly one of the best players in the National Basketball Association (NBA). Known for his scoring abilities, the popular MVP has been the face of success and excellence for aspiring players and among his peers since he became a player for the Houston Rockets.
He is one of the most individually decorated players of the NBA with personal awards, ranging from multiple All-Star appearances to the coveted Most Valuable Player award, and multiple appearances in the All-NBA First Team. Needless to say, he is a star and everyone knows it. But how did James get to where he is now? Let’s find out.
James Harden Began His Career at Arizona State
Although he has become a well-known star in the NBA, it was during his time at Arizona State University that helped to mold him into the star he has become. The Houston Rockets’ star player was born on the 26th of August, 1989, in Los Angeles, California. He was born as the youngest child of his family and was exposed to basketball early in his life. His basketball career started at Artesia High School, where he helped his team to win two state titles and was named to McDonald’s All-American team.
Harden had his college career at Arizona State University, where he began to earn his reputation as a great point scorer. Accumulating individual awards for his performances has been the theme of his career as a professional basketball player, and it started in college, where he won multiple awards over two years at Arizona State University. He declared for the NBA in 2009 and was subsequently drafted by the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Becoming a Legend in the City of Houston
The legend and legacy of James Harden most definitely rest with the Houston Rockets, but he began his journey to greatness in the NBA with Oklahoma City Thunder, where he spent three seasons and reached the NBA Finals in 2012. After a slow first season with OKC, the shooting guard progressively grew into the team and became one of its best players. Eventually, a contract dispute sent him to Houston Rockets.
James Harden has been playing for the Rockets since 2012, and in that time, he has become one of the most feared players in the league. Having spent his time at OKC behind Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook, he became one of the main players for the Rockets, starting from his debut when he posted 37 points and 12 assists.
Since then, he has become the face of the Houston Rockets franchise and has helped the team compete at the highest level, thus reaching the playoffs every season he has been with them. In the national team, James Harden has won two gold medals, one for the FIBA Championships in 2014 and another for the Olympic Games in 2012.
Highlights of His NBA Career & Achievements
Having spent over a decade in the NBA, James Harden has played over 700 games, starting over 500 of them. A slow start in his first season saw him average 9.9 points per game, but he has since had a steady rise in his career to get to a staggering 24.3 points per game as of the 2019/2020 season.
Having also made the All-Star team multiple times, he has played over 6 games, starting 5 of them and averaging 15.9 points per game. In the playoffs, which he has played in every season since he joined the league, James Harden has played over 115 games and averaged 22.9 points per game.
Throughout his career, the shooting guard has won several individual awards as a result of his outstanding performances. Some of these awards include NBA assists leader, scoring champion (2x), NBA All-Star (8x), All-NBA First Team (5x), and Most Valuable Player (2018). He is, however, yet to win the coveted NBA Championships title.
How Much Has James Harden Earned So Far?
Being one of the world-class players in the NBA, James Harden’s revenue stream goes beyond his salary as a player for the Houston Rockets. He is a brand ambassador for a few products, including Adidas, which gave him a 13-year contract worth $200 million in 2015. As for his salary, Harden started his NBA career with Oklahoma City Thunder, earning what is now to him a measly $4.76 million for two years.
He signed his first mega-contract in 2012 when he sealed a $78.78 million five-year contract with the Houston Rockets. Harden is currently on a four-year $171 million contract, which he signed with the Rockets in July 2017. The deal currently pays him about $30 million but would reach as high as $47 million in its final year. All these, combined with his other financial endeavors, have helped the shooting guard to a net worth of $145 million.
Details of His Love Life And Relationships
Harden is not just balling on the courts, but also in real life. The NBA star has been romantically linked with a bevy of beauties, starting with rapper, Trina. Trina is an American rapper and TV personality. She has dropped about six studio albums and has been hailed by Billboard as one of the female rappers that changed hip-hop. Harden and Trina dated throughout 2011.
They subsequently broke up in 2012, and the shooting guard embarked on some short-lived flings before commencing a relationship with radio personality, Sarah Bellew, in 2013. Harden’s romance with Bellew lasted for two good years, and it seemed that something would come out of it. It was, however, not to be as the two bade farewell to each other in 2015.
Following the end of his relationship with Bellew, James Harden embarked on another series of brief romances before commencing a relationship with reality TV star, Khloe Kardashian, in 2015. As expected, this star-coupling generated a lot of publicity, and the paparazzi hounded these two wherever they went. Harden eventually became uncomfortable with the amount of publicity that comes with dating a Kardashian, and so, he decided to call things off in 2016. He later described his yearlong romance with Khloe as the worst year of his life, stating that the publicity was just too much.
Since ending things with Khloe, Harden has gone on to date famed singer Ashanti (2017) and fitness guru, Brittany Renner (2018). The Houston rockets star is now going steady with the Instagram model, Arab Money. The pair started dating in April 2018, and Money has been spotted at several Rockets’ games. She also regularly posts her man’s stats on Instagram. Harden on his part sent her a gorgeous bouquet to celebrate Val’s day 2019. He also attended her birthday party in the city of Miami.
All About His Facial Signature Look
James Harden is popularly known as The Beard, and the reason for this is not hard to spot. The Rockets’ star boasts of a luxurious mane, which has become his signature look. It has also come in handy in games, helping him to avoid getting hit in the face by a ball. Harden started growing his facial hair since his last year of college and has kept it up throughout his glorious NBA run.
The shooting guard has revealed that he would never shave it off except for the right cause, as well as a huge amount of money. As we wait for the right cause to come along, Harden is happy to keep on growing his signature beard. He has a personal barber who trims it for him. He also has other maintenance routines, including regular shampooing, combing it in the desired direction, and hydrating it at night time, as well as the use of beard oil during warmer months.