James Harden Blames Heavy Minutes for Bad Defense

by December 03, 2015

Indubitably, James Harden is one of the NBA’s best offensive players, a scoring machine that cannot be stopped.

Defense, though, remains a challenge for The Beard.

Harden thinks lapses happen on the defensive end due to his heavy workload—the 26-year-old is currently logging 39.3 minutes a night, good for highest in the League.

Per the Houston Chronicle:

Among the league leaders in minutes played last season, he has averaged nearly three minutes more per game than anyone in the NBA, playing a career-high average of 39.3 minutes per game, a routine that he said would likely have to change and has affected his play.


“Forty a night is pretty tough, especially if you want to get efficient on both ends of the floor,” Harden said. “We got to figure it out. We have to figure out how to give guys more minutes and be more effective on the court so as a team we can get better.”


When asked if the workload was limiting his effectiveness defensively, Harden said, “Who do you know now who is playing 40 minutes at a high level on both ends of the floor nowadays?” […] “Playing those minutes, you’re going to have some lapses, you’re going to have some mistakes,” Harden said. “I try not to worry about them. I try to give it my all on both ends of the floor and live with the results.”