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James Harden receives Darius Slay interception game ball

Harden became an unexpected participant in the Philadelphia Eagles’ dominant Monday Night victory.

Minnesota Vikings v Philadelphia Eagles Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

Things ended sourly for James Harden in the 2022 NBA playoffs, attempting only two shots and going scoreless in the Philadelphia 76ers’ Game 6 season-ending loss to the Miami Heat. The offseason, though, has seen the mutual love fest between Harden and Daryl Morey extend to the greater Philadelphia area. The Beard earned himself some brownie points among the Sixers fan base by re-signing for what most perceive as a below market deal (two-year, $68.6 million, including a year-two player option), in order to allow Morey to use those cap savings to bolster the rest of the roster. Harden has since looked to be in terrific shape, is reportedly eating healthier than ever, and has been building chemistry with Joel Embiid, Tyrese Maxey, P.J. Tucker, and others on and off the court.

The vibes are strong heading into the 2022-23 season, and now, Harden is taking his relationship with the city to the next level. He was in attendance for the Philadelphia Eagles’ Monday Night Football contest against the Minnesota Vikings, taking a page out of Bryce Harper’s “How to Endear Oneself to Philadelphia Fans” playbook. Naturally, Harper was at the game as well.

However, it wasn’t just the usual “Look who’s in attendance” television montage when Harden popped up Monday night. After Eagles cornerback Darius Slay intercepted Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins in the third quarter, he raced across the field to hand the ball off to Harden.

Big Game Slay would later record a second interception on a pass intended for Justin Jefferson in the end zone, while tallying five passes defensed, in an outstanding performance by the first-time team captain. Jefferson was held to just six catches for 48 yards as the Eagles dominated with a 24-7 win.

Based on how Slay and the Eagles performed with Harden in attendance, Jeffrey Lurie should make an effort to get Harden to as many games as possible. Maybe a partnership for The Beard wines in the luxury box suites?

All the stars are aligning across the Philadelphia sports landscape. Bring out the City of Champions t-shirts and bask in the glow this week, folks.