James Harden will miss his fifth straight game on Friday when the Brooklyn Nets host the Charlotte Hornets. 

The three-time scoring champion has been dealing with a hamstring strain. He returned last week against the New York Knicks, but only played four minutes before exiting the court. 

The 31-year-old Harden is averaging 25.2 points, eight rebounds and 10.9 assists per game this season while shooting 46.3% from the field and 35.8% from deep. 

At one point, Harden was considered the favorite to win the MVP award this season. However, he now has the fourth-best odds at +1400 behind Nikola Jokic, Joel Embiid and Giannis Antetokounmpo, according to BetOnline.ag.

The Nets are 3-3 in their last six games as Harden’s absence has slowed the team’s pursuit of the top spot in the Western Conference. Brooklyn is currently one game behind the Philadelphia 76ers for first place.  



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