Apr. 18, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard James Harden points prior to the game against the Phoenix Suns at the US Airways Center. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE

James Harden: I want to keep playing with the OKC Thunder

The next goal for the Oklahoma City Thunder this summer is coming to an agreement with James Harden on a contract extension.

The Thunder already locked up Serge Ibaka this summer signing him to a 4-year, $48 million extension. Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Ibaka are all now locked up through 2016 for the Thunder.

“I don’t know. I can’t make that decision,” Harden told Marca.com. “I only focus on playing. I want to keep playing with the Thunder. I feel like home and the team is special. My teammates are like my family. We can do big things. We’ll see what happens.”

That has been the attitude Harden has had all along. He loves his team and Oklahoma City and would want nothing more than to remain a part of the franchise.

Harden will more than likely have to sacrifice some money to stay in Oklahoma City. He will be worthy of a max deal worth four years, $58 million if he becomes a restricted free agent next summer. The Thunder don’t want to have to pay Harden that much.

Harden will likely have to sacrifice $6-10 million to stay in OKC. That’s a lot of money to ask a 23-year old to walk away from.

That’s the kind of culture GM Sam Presti has created in Oklahoma City though. If Harden does sacrifice money to remain part of the team, he won’t be the first. Westbrook and Ibaka also have taken less money than they could have gotten to stay in OKC and that more than anything else should be telling of what Harden will probably do too.

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