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Report: Harden eyeing return on current 76ers road trip

Jesse D. Garrabrant / National Basketball Association / Getty

Philadelphia 76ers star James Harden is targeting a return during the team's current three-game road trip, sources told The Athletic's Shams Charania.

The 76ers will play the Memphis Grizzlies on Friday, but Monday's contest against the Houston Rockets is Harden's most likely return date.

Philadelphia officially ruled him out of Wednesday's trip to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The 33-year-old has been out since Nov. 2 with a strained tendon in his foot.

After the three-game road trip, the 76ers return home to host the Los Angeles Lakers next Friday.

Harden averaged a double-double of 22 points and 10 assists to go along with seven rebounds and 1.1 steals through nine games before sustaining the injury to his right foot.

Philadelphia has dealt with a few other injuries in Harden's absence - star center Joel Embiid missed five games - but the team has gone 8-4 and risen from ninth to fifth in the conference during that span.

A 10-time All-Star and former MVP, Harden agreed to a pay cut this past offseason. He signed a new two-year, $68.6-million contract in order to give the 76ers the financial flexibility to sign other free agents. His new deal contains a player option for 2023-24, allowing him to again enter free agency after the current season.

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