September 25, 2022

This “Trust the Prophecy” poll will seek to tap into the collective wisdom of the Liberty Ballers community. The wisdom of crowds is often more powerful than the guesswork of an individual. An example is the old “guess how many candies are in the jar” contest. It has been shown that the average of each masker’s guess is often surprisingly close to the precise amount of candy, and much better than the guess of most random participants. As a community, let’s try to forecast.

While many fans are focusing on trade rumors and the upcoming 2022 NBA Draft, Daryl Morey and Elton Brand are also focusing on working with their star guard to figure out the James Harden contract situation. Will the seven-time California All-NBA native go for his massive $47 million option and siphon off valuable wiggle room under the salary cap apron? Will he step aside and restructure a new deal that allows the team to add support to win now? Will things fall apart and will he eventually answer the calls of rival teams?

We have a lot of questions about this situation. Before we get into the details, let’s take a look at how we’ve been doing so far this season as the Liberty Ballers prediction community lately.

In December, we voted on when we would see a Ben Simmons trade.

This one looks like a lay-up in hindsight. But remember at the time, the front office in Philadelphia did the best it could to convince people that they could really take this trade from Simmons. through the February 10 deadline and summer!

Many of the top reporters came to believe that the agonizing resistance would most likely continue and Morey himself admitted that Simmons on the roster deadline was a possibility the team was prepared for.

But you nailed the forecast by a nose:

The wisdom of the crowds won by only 28 votes out of a total of 934 votes.

In the next one, we correctly predicted the Sixers would beat the Toronto Raptors in six games in the first round of the playoffs:

How did we know they would end this series in a hostile environment in the North, was it because “Sixers in six” rolls off the tongue so easily?

The Sixers initially looked to sweep the Raptors in four but Joel Embiid’s thumb injury threw a wrench in the plan. Then they tried to close Toronto at the cradle in five games, but inexplicably fell flat. Had they won that one, they could have saved Embiid from taking a horrible elbow to the face during the long Game 6 waste period. But hook or crook, we nailed the pick before the start of series.

So let’s get back to that prediction.

As a reminder, Harden has until June 29 to decide whether or not he wants to take a one-year annual salary of $47.4 million or turn it down and become an unrestricted free agent for the first time in his worthy career. of the Hall of Fame for 13 years. It’s then up to the team to make it worth it to pull out, assuming that’s what Morey and Brand would prefer.

Will Harden play ball, like he hinted he would?

Ideally for The Beard, he’d probably like to find one or two teams willing to make him a max offer in order to push the Sixers to the limit. The most he can command on a five-year contract with Philadelphia would be over $270 million.

Danny Leroux of The Athletic presented two possibilities for a Harden extension, which end up in the middle. One where his yearly increases go up (giving the Sixers more spending now) and one where they go down (giving them more room later):

“Let’s say, theoretically, Harden was willing to take $35 million per season over five years rather than his max. On a brand new contract starting in 2022-23, it might look like this:

However, using the player option, both parties could structure the same global money this way:

Forbes’ Bryan Toporek provided an in-depth read on the different ways this could happen.

By Toporek:

“When asked after Game 6 if he plans to take his $47.4 million player option for next season, Harden replied, “I will be there.” He also hinted that he would be willing to settle for a non-maximum extension, tell reporters“Whatever it takes to help this team grow.”

Depending on how much less he’s willing to take, that could end up being the Sixers’ best-case scenario.

If Harden chooses not to become a free agent, he could take any salary up to $46.5 million in the first year, and his contract could go up or down 8% every year from there. If he chooses his player option, he could then sign a four-year extension with a starting salary of up to $49.7 million and the same 8% annual increases or decreases.”

And more recently, Derek Bodner of ‘The Daily Six’ wondered “what should the Sixers’ priority be in contract negotiations for James Harden?”

As Bodner pointed out, (in his epic each scary angle considered for analysis):

“I think the Sixers need to prioritize rostering a legitimate contender now, when Embiid is still happy in Philadelphia and at his physical peak. That means clearing some room under the apron if possible, both to facilitate a trade with Tobias Harris if there’s one that makes sense and improve your depth, but also so you can use that full exception to increase your chances. to sign players. who can hang in the playoffs.

The second priority for me would be to try to have a space cap in 2025.”

So with all of that in mind, let’s try a survey. It’s going to be double, since we are planning an annual salary and a total number of years.

Here we are.


At what dollar range will Harden’s annual salary start?


How many years will Harden sign with Sixers?

  • ten%

    0: he withdraws and goes to FA or a surprise sign-and-exchange

    (13 votes)

  • 26%

    1: he plays the year we revisit next summer when he is FA

    (31 votes)

119 voices in total

Vote now

Tell your friends to vote too and see if we can continue our lucky streak. Come back when we know more to see how we did.