James Harden once again away from Sixers, citing personal matters

Philadelphia 76ers forward P.J. Tucker, left, talks with guard James Harden during the NBA basketball team’s practice on Thursday, Oct. 5, 2023, in Fort Collins, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

For the second day in a row, disgruntled Philadelphia 76ers star James Harden did not report to the team’s scheduled practice. According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Harden has been in Houston since Sunday due to a personal matter.

Head coach Nick Nurse said it would be “unlikely” for James to play in the preseason finale on Friday against the Atlanta Hawks. He also nodded to the behind-the-scenes discussions of a Harden trade, but didn’t provide many further details.

President of operations Daryl Morey is continuing in talks to trade Harden, particularly to his desired destination of the Los Angeles Clippers. However, little progress seems to have been made, as the Clippers are reportedly unwilling to give up combo guard Terrance Mann in a Harden trade. 

While James originally reported to training camp and made it seem like he would play for the Sixers until his trade request was honored, his recent absences may call that into question. The details of his personal matter are unclear, and he has not been with the team since Sunday.