October 04, 2023
After skipping Monday's media day and Tuesday's first practice of training camp, Philadelphia 76ers point guard James Harden joined the team on Wednesday. He took part in most of practice, according to head coach Nick Nurse, who told reporters he spoke with Harden shortly before the session began and that "he looked good." Despite his return, Harden continues to seek a trade away from the Sixers, while Nurse said "we expect him to be here now."
Nurse added that Harden did not address the team and does not think Harden needs to do so.
Nick Nurse gave a 👍🏻 on Harden’s conditioning, and he doesn’t think there needs to be a formal acknowledgment of the situation.— PHLY Sixers (@PHLY_Sixers) October 4, 2023
“He’s here, he knows the schedule, and we expect him to be here now.” pic.twitter.com/nYZTEG6Ikm
"We're all grown men here," forward Tobias Harris told reporters at the Colorado State-based camp. "Everybody understands the business of the game of basketball at this point. Personally, he doesn't have to address myself or anybody, truthfully. His participation, in my opinion, is addressing that he's here and his attitude and energy today allowed everybody to understand that he wants to go out here and compete with us and get stuff done.
"He's not in here disrespecting any one of his teammates in any type of fashion, so, at the end of the day, we are here to play basketball and do our job – represent the city and help win a championship for Philadelphia."
Tobias Harris on Harden: “He’s here and his attitude and energy today allowed everybody to understand that he wants to go out there and compete with us” pic.twitter.com/wURjzXPCVC— Kyle Neubeck (@KyleNeubeck) October 4, 2023
Harden's nondescript practice comes on the heels of ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reporting that the veteran would show up to camp with intentions to "make the 76ers uncomfortable. So uncomfortable, ultimately, that they don’t think that they're going to get the best out of him and make a trade."
Until or if that arises, Harden is back with his teammates preparing for Philadelphia's first preseason game, which comes October 8 against the Boston Celtics at 6 p.m. inside TD Garden.
"James is like a big brother to all of us," Paul Reed said (via NBC Sports Philly). "It was just cool having our big brother back."
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