James Harden was among the members of the Thunder available to speak to reporters this afternoon for media day, and predictably, he fielded some questions about his contract situation. According to Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman (via Twitter), Harden said he wasn't necessarily seeking a max contract, and that he's willing to make a sacrifice to stay in Oklahoma City. The All-Star guard also added that he's confident a deal will get done, tweets Mayberry.
There has been no shortage of rumors and speculation on Harden's contract situation this summer, as the Thunder look for away to keep their core intact without going too far into luxury-tax territory. Mayberry himself wrote within the last 24 hours that it was looking more and more like Harden would hit restricted free agency next summer, and it doesn't appear that Harden's comments today changed the beat writer's mind (Twitter link).
Still, if Harden is geniunely willing to make a sacrifice to remain in Oklahoma City, it can only be good news for the Thunder. There's no doubt that the 23-year-old will receive at least one max-contract offer next summer, barring a major injury or decline in production this season. So if the Thunder have the chance to lock him up for a lesser price before Halloween, it will be something they'll seriously consider.