‘He Hasn’t Stepped up Yet’- Lakers Legend Shaquille O’Neal Slams James Harden

January 22, 2021 1:39 am

The Brooklyn Nets have been playing some fantastic basketball this season. With the Big Three of Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and James Harden, there is so no doubt that the Nets are one of the favorites for the title this season.

After his move to the Nets, the Beard was pretty vocal about his critics. In an Instagram story, Harden had pointed out how some ex-NBA players were criticizing him on television. This was certainly a subtle dig in the likes of Shaquille O’Neal.

Shaq recently made an appearance on ESPN’s First Take. In the show, Shaq responded to Harden’s comments. He also explained why it’s a championship or bust for the Nets.

“KD knows what it takes to win a championship, so does Kyrie. James hasn’t been there yet, it’s time to win a championship. All the talk about going to the Finals, no no, he’s not a young player.

“This isn’t his first or second year, championship or bust. I think James has a little problem with what I said.”

He added, “He hasn’t stepped up yet. All that talk about you know we should be uplifting brothers and all that, I uplift my brother but I am here with the truth. I am not a Yes Man. You ain’t show up yet. You gotta win the championship.

“All that making it top the finals, you are supposed to make the finals, but you are also supposed to win. I want to see some people win. I wish them well, I hope they win, but if they don’t get a championship, it’s a bust.”

The Hall of Famer certainly has a point. Despite being one of the best scorers, Harden only has a single Finals appearance. With his prime running out, can he win the championship this season?

Can James Harden finally silence his critics?

James Harden has looked at his best in the first 3 games he has played in the Nets. He does not have to carry the offensive load of the team and has to adjust to a new role.

This Brooklyn Nets squad might be the one and only chance for Harden to win the coveted NBA title. He hasn’t been surrounded by so much talent ever since he left the OKC Thunder.

The Beard is still in his prime and will be determined to do anything to finally add the championship to his decorated resume.

Jan 20, 2021; Cleveland, Ohio, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers guard Collin Sexton (2) drives against Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden (13) in the second overtime at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The biggest concern, however, will be chemistry. In the first 2 games, it looked like a two-man show with KD and Harden. With Kyrie Irving returning, everyone thought Uncle Drew was going to be the third guy in the team.

But with his 37 point performance against the Cavs, he has certainly announced that he isn’t going to take a step back. Will Harden be willing to sacrifice after being the poster boy of the Rockets organization?

The Nets have instantly become the favorites for the championship. Can they trump the champions Los Angeles Lakers?

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Aditya Mohapatra

Aditya Mohapatra is a sports enthusiast who primarily covers the NBA for EssentiallySports. Having graduated in Mass Communication, he has prior experience in writing for ABP News. This die-hard Lakers fan considers LeBron James his idol.

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