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Brian Windhorst Has Telling Comment About James Harden's Future In Philadelphia

James Harden debuts with the 76ers.

MINNEAPOLIS, MN - FEBRUARY 25: James Harden #1 of the Philadelphia 76ers reacts to a play on the court against the Minnesota Timberwolves in the first quarter of the game at Target Center on February 25, 2022 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by David Berding/Getty Images)

James Harden's future in Philadelphia appears to be in jeopardy. 

The former superstar was only a shadow of his former self throughout the NBA Playoffs. He had just 11 points, nine assists and four rebounds in Philly's Game 6 loss to the Heat on Thursday evening. 

So what now? ESPN's Brian Windhorst doesn't believe the Sixers are going to give Harden a max contract this offseason. 

Instead, he thinks Daryl Morey will try and persuade Harden to take a Chris Paul-like deal to allow the 76ers more flexibility in improving the roster this summer. 

"I think at this point nobody in the NBA believes that the Sixers are going to give James Harden a max contract," Windhorst said on Friday. "So the question is what is he willing to do? You could look at what happened with Chris Paul last year with the Suns. He opted out of a $44 million deal this year and actually took a $14 million pay cut and then is taking another pay cut next year with the theory that the Suns are going to be able to keep that championship-level team together. Is James Harden prepared to do that? Or will he just opt in and say, 'I have a $47 million option, that's what you're gonna pay me.' These are the questions that are going to happen over the next couple of months and I can tell you this: no matter what you think about Daryl Morey and his team building, Daryl Morey always thinks big and he will have a plan into this summer to improve this summer, but he may need James Harden on board with it and we'll see how much Harden is willing to play ball."

The real question is would James Harden be willing to take a pay cut or will he go with his player option?

It's going to be a messy offseason in Philly.