You may have seen the footage. An unbalanced James Harden gains halfcourt by teasing the sham god. The switch defense adapts on the fly only to find Harden an equal match to their forward-thinking. In one quick motion, the former MVP turns his back on his opponent, again to create separation. He switches his handle to his shooting hand, and off it goes, a one-legged three-point attempt straight out of a video game trailer.
As it turns out, the "one-legged three" as demonstrated in the above clip, is something James Harden hopes to implement this upcoming NBA season, even though on the surface, it resembles a circus shot that should only work against rec league defenders.
"I'm always trying to be creative," Harden told ESPN this weekend at a charity event. "I'm always trying to get better -- at basketball, life, businesswise. I'm always trying to find ways to be impactful. With basketball, you have to be creative. This is my 11th year, and every single year I want to get better. I don't want to stay the same. You've got to find ways to keep growing."
There's no reason to believe that Harden can't find some measure of success with the one-legger, as his step-back jumper is in itself an off-balanced shot which has brought him unprecedented success in the league. Harden told ESPN that his inspiration for the shot was to gain a "signature move" like his NBA predecessors.
"I'm not sure; it's something that I work on," Harden said as he began listing off a who's who of All-Time greats and their signature moves. "But you know how Mike [Jordan] has his fadeaway and Dirk [Nowitzki] has his one-leg and [Kareem Abdul-Jabbar] had the skyhook, I want my step-back to be one of those moves that last forever. So when I travel around the world and I see little kids that [say], 'Hey James, I got a step-back!' -- I love to see that."