This season, one of the biggest storylines around the Philadelphia 76ers is James Harden’s potential looming free agency. The former MVP signed a deal last offseason that allows him to become an unrestricted free agent again this summer.

Just before the Sixers took the court on Christmas Day, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Harden might be entertaining a return to the Houston Rockets. Since then, there have been multiple stories regarding that possibility. Whether there is substance to these reports or not, the narrative itself is completely flawed.

Harden ascended to NBA superstardom during his time with the Houston Rockets. The highs were great, but things ended with some rough lows. After showing up to start the 2020-21 season completely out of shape, he was eventually traded to the Brooklyn Nets.

Part of why Harden wanted out was because it was clear the team was gearing for a rebuild. Houston now has a batch of young talent, but there have been minimal results thus far. This year, they are one of the NBA’s worst teams, with a record of 13-49 entering Friday’s games.

At this point in his career, Harden has done just about everything except win a championship. Securing a ring is one of the main reasons why he wanted to join forces with Joel Embiid in Philadelphia and took a massive pay cut on his current deal.