While Joel Embiid spent his weekend celebrating another milestone in life, his good friend James Harden was nowhere to be found. The 2023 NBA Most Valuable Player of the Year finally tied the knot with longtime girlfriend Anne de Paula. Their wedding celebrations took place in Italy. The couple seemed as happy as they could be.
Embiid met Paula through few mutual acquaintances and they began dating in 2018. However, two years after officially dating, the couple welcomed Arthur Elijah, their firstborn. Most of the Philadelphia 76ers squad was present at the wedding. Fans on social media were overjoyed on seeing a picture of Embiid with teammates Tyrese Maxey, Tobias Harris, De’Anthony Melton, and George Niang.
— BGN Hoops (@BGNHoops) July 23, 2023
People were surprised to see Niang present at the wedding as he signed with the Cleveland Cavaliers this off-season. But there were still no signs of James Harden. Understandably, James is busy trying to figure out a way to get out of Philly. But based on Embiid’s comments from a few weeks ago, it seemed as if the two developed a deeper friendship than most of us thought they had.
Fans react to James Harden’s absence at Joel Embiid’s wedding
Over a week ago, Joel Embiid was interviewed on recent developments involving James Harden’s future with the 76ers. He said, “I want him to come back obviously so that we can go out and accomplish what we want, which is to win a championship. So hopefully, his mindset can be changed… I’m just so happy to be his friend. You know we’re close and we’ve grown since he got here.” However, these comments are being put under scrutiny due to Harden’s absurd absence from the wedding.
While fans shared their congratulatory messages to Embiid and Paula, a few questioned James Harden’s whereabouts. One fan said, “No Harden?” while another said, “James Harden held out from the wedding.”
To add to the speculation, the 2018 MVP award recipient removed all 76er’s mentions on his Instagram and Twitter accounts. The former MVP opted in for a $35.6 million player option but slammed the Sixers with a sudden trade request. President of Basketball Operations, Daryl Morey has agreed to find him a new home but is adamant to find someone of Harden’s caliber.
James Harden has removed everything Sixers related from his bio on social media 👀 pic.twitter.com/2HJWE3cMAe
— Sporting News NBA (@sn_nba) July 20, 2023
The Los Angeles Clippers have emerged as Harden’s favored trade destination. LA can make this trade happen if they are willing to trade one of their superstars. Paul George happens to be the biggest target in this case. However, there hasn’t been any update since the James to Clippers rumors surfaced.