James Harden is ‘not even close’ to being MVP – Richard Jefferson | First Take

James Harden is ‘not even close’ to being MVP – Richard Jefferson | First Take

Richard Jefferson explains why Houston Rockets star James Harden isn’t his top choice for NBA MVP. Jefferson says he would take Toronto Raptors star Kawhi Leonard over Harden and Milwaukee Bucks star Giannis Antetokounmpo right now.

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103 Responses

  1. Im gonna have this name for 2 months I regert this says:

    After this discussion the refs let harden shoot 2

    • Nay tan Santos says:


    • Jrock420blam says:

      +unkown knowns uhh yeah if LeBron was up by 20+ in two elimination games I 100% guarantee LeBron wins without Kyrie. Jordan would have done the same without Pippen if they were up that much. All Harden had to do was not lose the game by making a few shots and playing defense…. he did neither.

    • Jrock420blam says:

      +plantation free LeBron won all his elimination games to get to the finals on a team that was exponentially weaker than the Rockets. Where was Harden when they were up 20 for 2 games in a row and just needed a few buckets to win.

    • plantation free says:

      Maybe if Lebron had the scoring ability of Harden, he could’ve had a chance to get up by 20 in game 6 instead of getting the breaks beat off him from the start.

    • Jrock420blam says:

      +plantation free you mean if LBJ had CP3? I agree if he had CP3 they wouldn’t have lost or if he was on that stacked team in general even with CP3 hurt. LeBron had a worse team and was winning until JR Smith screwed them, Rockets were up and Harden JR Smith’d himself.

  2. Wang Yongchen says:

    James Harden probably doesn’t deserve MVP right now. But he deserves more credits. If he keeps this pace, and the Rockets gets top 3 in the west, he should be MVP.

  3. Nathaniel Aiken says:

    James Harden single handedly turned their entire season around.

    • Tropic Mix says:

      +LeBron Crybaby James kd, I don’t think kawhi is better than, but kawhi can be more beneficial to a team than steph BASED ON the system each player is in. Kawhi is good for a team defense oriented mid range team, while steph is great at floor spacing, playmaking, and for some god damn reason people think steph can ONLY shoot, I don’t know where the hell that came from, he can drive in just as good as anyone.

    • Mark Jaramillo says:

      Don’t forget Harden’s right hand men …the refs.

    • Trxii says:

      +LeBron Crybaby James Kawhi is better than Steph XD

    • Trxii says:

      +Josh R ok they used to be 15th soooooo whats your point

    • Josh R says:

      +Trxii it’s not *my* point…the OP said he turned their season around … Yes, he certainly did his part to bring them from the bottom to relevancy, albeit, were not even at the halfway point yet

  4. Arshdeep Singh says:

    Giannis, Kawhi, and Harden are the 3 main MVP candidates. As a Raptors fan, I would love if Kawhi wins it but he has missed a couple of games plus he still hasn’t started playing on back to backs. Harden is another MVP candidate but he did win it last season and the Rockets are not doing as good this season as they did last season. I think Giannis is the favourite and deservedly so. Kawhi is still the best player in the east and the Raptors are still the best teams in the east though.

  5. LegendaryEA says:

    lmfaoo espn has been clout chasing this entire week. Saying crazy things like this,giannis isnt a mvp and etc so we watch the video

  6. REALSPORTSTALK 313 says:

    The Rockets Are currently 4th in the WEST RIGHT NOW SMH OMG RJ YOU WAS ?

  7. Mike Jones says:

    The new sign of greatness is illogical hatred .

  8. RontheGoat says:

    Wait, harden doesnt play defense? Why is harden top 5 in steals then? Harden is the sole reason why the rockets are relevant right now. He is probably the next Kobe Bryant from 2006 where he carried his team. Harden is also top 5 in efficiency even better than KD! Therefore, Richard argument about Harden not playing defense is absolutely ridiculous. Didnt he guard AD and made him missed most of his shots? Didn’t harden guard Marc Gasol and made him missed his shots? Ppl need to stop watch his games and then speak on it.

    • Tropic Mix says:

      +Chip Skylark unless you get like 9 fuckin steals ? if you get that many, yeah, you’re trying hard as hell

    • Tropic Mix says:

      +RontheGoat but why would kobe be afraid of bron? Saying not afraid and good are the same thing is like saying, “eh, I’ve done this a couple times, I’m okay” is the same thing as, “yeah, I’ve done this for years, I know what I’m doing”

    • Tropic Mix says:

      +alan shelly koshy kobe? Kobe was damn near retired around that time? harden has improved his defense a lot, but he still has to improve it more, he does have some long stretches where he won’t make an effort after he gets beat.

    • Tropic Mix says:

      +RontheGoat Gary Payton did a FANTASTIC job guarding mj in the last two games of that finals. Watch the game, what point guard holds prime Jordan to low 20’s to mid 20’s in points in the FINALS.

    • AfroCrew2022 says:

      Wade County Exactly people were clowning Lebron last year so it’s only right that harden keeps his “no defense” title.

  9. Shontavius Laye says:

    I aint a Harden fan but Jefferson smoking rocks lol

  10. Christian Saunders says:

    Richard Jefferson decided to be today’s Ryan hollins

  11. abdou didi says:

    Not even close? Are you serious espn?

  12. Clips 36 says:

    And this is the last time we’ll ever see Richard Jefferson again on ESPN

  13. Tonio5100 says:

    LeSPN trying to say all these guys not worthy of MVP so they can just throw LeBron name in the bag soon
    They saying Curry missed too many game
    They saying the Raptors still win without Kawhi
    They said KD struggled when Curry was out
    They had fools like Ryan Hollins say Greek Freak wasn’t MVP worthy
    They been bashing Harden CONSTANTLY since he went on his December run
    So if ESPN trying to say those guys are not worthy then who is?????? ??? Oh yeah LeBron James

    • Tonio5100 says:

      +byron peterkin what 6 players do you see when you watch the segment ? If he wasn’t a candidate his picture wouldn’t be up there right just like KD picture not up there ???

    • Luke Nutkicker says:

      +Tonio5100 Which person on the panel suggested LeBron should be MVP? I heard Giannis, Kawhi, and Harden no one stated that LeBron is front runner for MVP. Is LeBron in the race of course, the Lakers wouldn’t be where they are if it isn’t for him, but no one thinks he a front runner including everyone on that panel.

    • plantation free says:

      Don’t even try it. The Lakers started taking Ls before Lebron got hurt

    • Tonio5100 says:

      +Luke Nutkicker when did I say anyone said he was a front runner??? I said his name was MENTIONED nothing more nothing less…. & LeBron shouldn’t even be in the conversation especially if guys Kyrie Embiid & KD names not mentioned in the conversation & THAT’S MY POINT…… ESPN got LeBron picture up there with those other guys as if he on par with them this season & he’s not PERIOD

    • AA HH says:

      Ding ding ding.. you got it! Planting the seeds early for the feeble minded.

  14. Majestyyy Fordd says:

    I’m Not A James Harden Fan But Listen They Was The Number 14 Team In The West 3 Weeks Ago Now Number 4Th.. He Putting Up 40 A Night .. 9 Assists .. The Hate For Everybody But Lebron Needs To Stop !!??

  15. Curtis Griffin Jr says:

    Love him or hate him, Harden is so far ahead of everyone else in terms of performance that you simply CAN’T dimiss him if you have a shred of basketball knowledge or credibility. He just broke a record that the great Oscar Robinson held for the better part of 50 years while matching another record that only Kobe and MJ share. In doing this, he has singlehandedly dragged an underwhelming Rockets team to the 4th seed and he is NOT a legitimate MVP candidate? If Lebron, Kawhi, Giannis, or Curry averaged 40 points over a 10 game span, the media would lose their freaking minds and crown them the MVP right then and there but because its Harden, we’re supposed to yawn and overlook history being made?! While I will gladly concede that Giannis or Kawhi have their teams in better positions and, as such, have a stronger grasp on the MVP label, you simply can’t dismiss what Harden is doing in Houston right now. You can’t even write it off to free throws (Embiid averages 1.5 less free throws a game but doesn’t come close to the points per game Harden averages despite a higher shooting percentage) because if we normalize free throws (i.e. remove them for everyone) Harden STILL leads the league in scoring. That man is on another level period and it is doing basketball itself a dishonor by ignoring it and relegating or accrediting his accomplishment to a (marginal) free throw advantage or (inaccurate) lack of defense argument. The defense argument is really infuriating as Harden has tasked himself with taking on other teams best players in crunch times. He did it against the Celtics on Christmas (against Irving) and even did it a few night later in matching up against the 6 inches taller Anthony Davis who scored precisely once while being defended by Harden in crunch time. But he doesn’t play defense? I’m not even going to bring up his top five placement in steals because many will argue that steals aren’t necessarily a measure of defense (it is) while largely ignoring the fact that numerous players have made all NBA defense teams and won defensive player awards BECAUSE of steals but, for James Harden, apparently steals mean something differently. I’m not saying that he is a great defender and that he doesn’t have lapses (and who wouldn’t carrying the offensive load he carries), but he is far from the turnstile of 3 or 4 years ago.

  16. Lex and Jack says:

    James harden plays defense watch the games bro !

  17. Criss says:

    Richard Jefferson just came from winning the playa haters competition. He said the Rockets are fighting to get into the playoffs, but they are currently 4th in the West. He also said Harden is playing zero defense, but he is averaging 2 steals per game. To my next lesson kids…. dont smoke crack.

  18. Junaid Desai says:

    Oh yes he is. Harden is the one destroying the league. He is putting up Kobe and MJ scoring numbers with Stockton assist numbers.

    He’s up there for sure.

    Curry, LBJ, Kawhi, Giannis and Harden

    • sholove Sholove says:

      They can scored 43 points….. and only hit 8 shots! How the hell is that destroying the league? He destroying the league alright. By flopping all over the court for 40 minutes every game!



    • dru713281 says:

      +Roberto Rodriguez i dont like you calling the worst defender on the squad the best on the team shows you dont know what it takes to be a CHAMPION !

    • dru713281 says:

      +Steven Smith my man knows basketball…..listen to this man….you cannot be called great if you cant gaurd anybody….dont ever disrecpect kobe or jordan by ever putting this clown amongst them…..he be on skates all day and id go as far to say if kobe was 1v1 vs harden he tell em the cold hard truth…..you soft like toilet paper …..you aint shit !

    • Roberto Rodriguez says:

      +dru713281 well just because he’s not the best defender doesn’t mean he’s not the best on the team and don’t come with you don’t know how to be a champion crap. You trying to imply that in order to be the best on the squad you have to be a great defender that in itself a lie because the offensive greats are usually who keep the team going and in today’s nba if your team can’t score you’re team ain’t going nowhere.

  19. High Off Life TV says:

    The ESPN HATE for James Harden is sick.

  20. Lawis Clems says:

    He is not that wrong, if Curry, Lebron, KD had the same usage rate of Harden they could easily have Harden stats. 33ppg when you always have the ball ain’t that impressive. He is in the MVP conversation cause we can’t forget his stats, but he is definitely not the MVP right now. Plus, don’t forget the absurd amount of freethrows that he has regular season that he will not have in the playoffs.

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