'He's a clown': James Harden fires back at comments from former head coach Kevin McHale

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- James Harden is not shying away from his choice of words about former Houston Rockets head coach Kevin McHale.

Earlier this week, McHale appeared on NBA TV and declared that Harden "is not a leader."

"James can see all the passes and do everything, but James is not a leader," McHale said on NBA TV. "He tried being a leader last year, tried doing all that stuff. I think Chris Paul is going to help him just kind of get back into just being able to hoop and play and stuff like that."

Harden didn't appreciate those comments.

"He's a clown, honestly," he said after the Rockets' open practice Saturday. "I did anything and everything he asked me to do. I've tried to lead this team every day since I stepped foot here in Houston. To go on air and just downplay my name, when honestly he's never taught me anything to be a leader....but I've done a great job."

Harden said he's worked hard to be a better player.

"I usually don't go back and forth on social media with anybody or with interviews, but I'm going to stand up for myself, and there it is. But you just don't go and do that. It shows what type of person he is."

McHale was fired in November 2015 after three-plus season with the Rockets and leading the team to an appearance in the Western Conference finals.

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