When James Harden Injured Both His Eyes in a Scary Playoff Incident

Published 09/14/2021, 9:33 PM EDT
GUANGZHOU, CHINA – AUGUST 12: The NBA player James Harden of the Houston Rockets attends a commercial event at Haixinsha Asian Games Theme Park on August 12, 2017 in Guangzhou, China.  (Photo by Stringer/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)


James Harden is a magician on the court. He can take a painful amount of time dribbling and then use a nasty crossover to drop a bomb. More than anything, his passing skills and court vision are always there as lethal weapons. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Most defenders against The Beard lose their patience and the latter uses his ability to draw a foul to further aggravate them. However, when it’s Draymond Green on the other end, things can get pretty rough. And it did, when Harden badly injured himself in the process of going past the Warrior.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

James Harden and his crazy eye injury

On April 30, 2019, the 53-win Rockets met the 57-win Warriors in the semis of the WC. The Warriors were searching for their first three-peat while James Harden had the support of Chris Paul and his first ring was just three series wins away. However, something terrible happened in game 2.

In the opening minutes of the game, The Beard was in the paint hustling for a layup. That was when he found heavy traffic and an unforgiving Draymond Green trying to block his attempt. In a scary sequence, Green’s hand fell on Harden’s face and poked both his eyes. Seconds later, it was Harden on the floor with visible blood spots in his eyes. That was a crazy day because even Steph Curry had a finger dislocation on the same night. 

Although Draymond apologised to his victim, the Rockets lost their second away game primarily because of a poor first quarter. Surprisingly, The Beard with his blurry vision managed 29 points that night.

DIVE DEEPER

Who is James Harden Dating? His Former Girlfriends, Rumored Relations, and More

about 1 month ago

Did The Beard make a comeback in that series?

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Well, injuries were never new in the life of James Harden. Everyone remembers the night when the Lakers’ Ron Artest elbowed The Beard down. It was as viscous as it gets, but the latter bounced back. 

Jan 2, 2021; James Harden high fives a staff member during a game against the Kings at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Carmen Mandato/Pool Photo-USA TODAY Sports

Now, after going 0-2 in that series, the 9x All-Star had a crazy game 3. In a game that went into overtime, the charismatic Harden scored 41 points and was just one rebound shy of a double-double. His offense over Kevin Durant was on-point. The man continued the form in game 4 and managed to secure a 2-2 series draw before Steph Curry denied the Rockets a WCF berth.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Still, it was worth praising that James Harden almost got his cornea injured before he made a stupendous comeback. Hoping this never happens with the Nets’ Harden, what was your favorite moment from that memorable series? Help us know in the comments.

Watch this story – Injuries That James Harden Powered Through Over the Years

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

ADVERTISEMENT

Sourabh Singh

1615 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT