HOUSTON – James Harden was fined $50,000 Wednesday night for violating a COVID-19 protocol, according to the National Basketball Association.
On Wednesday morning, ESPN first reported the NBA was investigating social media videos that place Harden at a party Monday night in Houston, where Harden was pictured maskless.
Among other NBA protocols, the health and safety guidelines prohibit players from attending indoor social gatherings of 15 or more people or entering bars, lounges, clubs or similar establishments.
The NBA said because Harden attended a private indoor party on Monday, he was unavailable to play in the season opener against the Oklahoma City Thunder. The game was also postponed because the Rockets did not have enough eligible players.
Harden recently missed the first few days of Rockets training camp, while partying with rapper Lil Baby in both Atlanta and Las Vegas.
Harden has long demanded to be traded by the Rockets.
The Rockets have not responded to KPRC 2′s request for comment.
Harden posted a response on social media before the fine announced. He wrote:
“One thing after another. I went to show love to my homegirl at her event (not a strip club) because she is becoming a boss and putting her people in position of success and now it’s a problem.
“Every day, it’s something different.
“No matter how many time people try to drag my name under you can’t.
“The real always end on top.