When Forbes released its list of NBA’s highest-paid players for 2019, there were names to expect and others who came on the scene by surprise. But for James Harden, it wasn’t a surprise at all. With a career spanning a decade and thousands of points under his belt, there’s so much to expect from the NBA star. Although Harden currently plays for the Houston Rockets, his career history dates back to his college days at Arizona State, where he was named a consensus All-American and Pac-10 Player of the Year in 2009. More so, Hardy is a two-time member of the United States national basketball team, winning gold at the 2012 Summer Olympics and 2014 FIBA World Cup. This piece reveals James Harden’s net worth and how he’s made money playing basketball over the decade.
How He Made Money From Basketball
High School and College Career
There’s no way around James Harden’s net worth without taking you back to his early career days as a basketball player. Harden attended Artesia High School in Lakewood, California where he played on the school’s team and averaged 13.2 points and grew to 18.8 points, 7.9 rebounds, and 3.9 assists. Consequently, he was named a McDonald’s All-American; earning him a second-team Parade All-American honors.
After graduating Highschool, Harden went to Arizona State after getting picked at the Pac-10 Conference. His efforts on the team paid off. He was named first-team All-Pac-10 and was named to the conference all-freshman team. He also got named first-team All-District by the NABC and the USBWA. Still playing for Arizona State, Harden appeared on the cover of the Sports Illustrated college basketball issue and made it onto the Wooden Award preseason watch list.
Harden’s Success in the NBA
In 2009, Harden kicked off his NBA career with the Oklahoma City Thunder after getting picked third overall for the 2009 NBA Draft during the 2009–2010 season. He became the fourth-highest 3-point percentage-scorer under the age of 21 for the NBA. That season, Harden’s scored a whopping 26 points against the Golden State Warriors and was named to the NBA-All-Rookie second team. Two years later in 2011, Harden had become an integral part of the team, scoring 40 points against the Phoenix Suns. For such outstanding performance, he became the first NBA player in a reserve role to ever score 40 points, after Rodrigue Beaubois. After helping the Oklahoma City Thunder reach the 2012 NBA Finals (where they were defeated by the Miami Heat) he won the NBA Sixth Man of the Year award.
In 2012, Harden’s performance made him the fifth player in the history of the NBA to hit 2,000 points in a single campaign. Thereby pushing him into the league of the likes of Gilbert Arenas, Kobe Bryant, and Jerry Stackhouse, to become the #4 player to record at least 600 free throws and hit 150 or more 3-pointers in just one season. That same year, he was picked to be part of the national team at the 2012 Olympics, where the team won the gold medal. In 2014, Harden made it back to the national team that won the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup. With such a profile, Harden has been rewarded with mouthwatering contracts at the teams he has played for.
James Harden Net Worth
In 2019, James Harden emerged fifth place on Forbes’ highest-paid NBA players ranking. With an annual salary of $30.4 million and endorsement deals worth over $17 million, he comes behind Lebron James, Stephen Curry, Kevin Durrant, and Russell Westbrook. Back in his early days with Oklahoma Thunder, Harden signed his first-ever contract of two years for $4.76 million; with options for a third and fourth year. In 2017, a more successful Harden signed a four-year extension contract that landed him a six-year deal for approximately $228 million. This has been tagged as the richest contract ever signed in the history of the NBA. The contract will last until the 2022–2023 season.
James Harden also boasts of several money-spinning endorsement deals. He entered an agreement with Amazon this season; to partner with the retail giant to share his go-to workout products. According to sources, that also includes a huge involvement of his endorsement partners such as Adidas, BodyArmor and Beats. In October 2018, Harden was one of the original athletes pitching Art of Sport (AOS); a new body-care brand launched by fellow NBA star, Kobe Bryant.