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James Harden looks ripped in new offseason photo

Minnesota Timberwolves v Houston Rockets

HOUSTON, TX - MARCH 18: James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets walks across the court during their game against the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Toyota Center on March 18, 2016 in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this Photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)

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The Houston Rockets traded for Chris Paul earlier this year, and now it seems as though they have added yet another crucial piece to the puzzle. Namely, about 15 pounds of muscle on the frame of James Harden.

It’s just an estimate, but that’s what it looks like according to a shirtless photo of Harden that the guard posted to his Instagram page on Sunday.

Harden, who isn’t an über-slight guy but has never been on the beefy side for his position, looked absolutely ripped in the photo.

Via Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/p/BXvdfK5nFDD/

Basketball fans do tend to get wrapped up during the offseason about player weight gain or loss, and come time for the regular season those changes rarely stand as stark as they were in the summer as players slide into the day-to-day of winter.

Then again, Harden will be moved off the ball with Paul now on the roster and it is possible he will keep the weight on as a means of battling through physical contact against bigger wings.

In any case, this is a good reminder for all of us during the summer to hit the gym. I think we are all excited to see what the rest of this Rockets team looks like on the floor next year.