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$228M for Harden

LAS VEGAS (AP) – James Harden became a star in Houston, and now he’s ready to call the city home.

Harden signed a four-year, “supermax’’ extension Saturday, a whopper of a deal that guarantees Harden about $228 million over the next six seasons and makes it the richest contract in league history.

The extension alone tacks another $170 million or so – depending on how the salary cap escalates – on to a contract that still had two more years and nearly $60 million remaining. It’s a mammoth deal befitting one of the league’s brightest stars, which is exactly what the Beard has become in five seasons with the Rockets.

The deal keeps Harden under contract through the 2022-23 season, a lifetime in the modern NBA financial landscape in which so many superstars take short-term deals to maximize their earning potential. While anything can happen, this is about as much security as a player can get.

Harden is coming off of his finest season.