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Giannis Antetokounmpo on team’s All-Star plan: Attack James Harden

Giannis Antetokounmpo and James Harden

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - FEBRUARY 16: James Harden #2 of Team LeBron plays defense against Giannis Antetokounmpo #24 of Team Giannis during the 69th NBA All-Star Game on February 16, 2020 at the United Center in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Lampson Yip - Clicks Images/Getty Images)

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CHICAGO – James Harden has griped about Giannis Antetokounmpo winning Most Valuable Player last year.

After his team lost to Harden’s in the All-Star game Sunday, Antetokounmpo got in a dig at Harden.

“Offensively, we were just trying to find whoever James Harden was guarding,” Antetokounmpo said of his team’s strategy late. “That’s who we thought we’d have the opportunity to score on.”

Harden is not a good defender. But this is playing right into his hands. He’s at his best in isolation, especially in the post. He faces far more difficulty when run through actions off the ball or trying to keep up in transition.

Down the stretch, Harden defended more effectively than usual. Not great, but above his usual standard. Good enough for LeBron James’ team to win.

At least, as Giannis previously noted, the MVP trophy is at his house.