After being overlooked for the MVP award twice, James Harden is determined to finally secure the prize this season and is already the frontrunner to do so with some stunning performances.
The five-time All-Star has been on a tear this year and has led the Houston Rockets to an impressive 25-6 record in the Western Conference.
He currently leads the league in scoring, averaging an incredible 32.5 points per game, as well as 9.0 assists and 5.1 rebounds.
Harden is arguably the most gifted scorer in the league and has displayed this ability in the Rockets' most recent outings.
The Beard has dropped 51 points in back-to-back games against the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers.
The 28-year-old became the first player to hit 50-plus points in consecutive contests since Kobe Bryant accomplished the feat in 2007.
Harden is only the 10th player in NBA history to record consecutive 50-point games, joining some elite company such as Allen Iverson, Michael Jordan, and Wilt Chamberlain.
It was also the third 50-point outing for the Rockets superstar this season, which is more than the entire NBA combined.
But in both contests, however, his efforts were in vain as the Rockets surprisingly lost two straight games at home after reeling off a 14-game winning streak.
In a 128-118 loss to the Clippers on Friday night, Harden ended the evening on a sour note as he was ejected for knocking the ball out of the official's hand.
He finished the game with 51 points, four rebounds and eight assists on 15-of-28 shooting but the All-NBA star was not interested in his stats and chose to hit out at the referees instead following the contest.
"I'm tired of hearing, 'I made a mistake,' or 'I didn't see it,'" said Harden, per ESPN's Tim McMahon. "That's frustrating when you hear it as a player. I know we all make mistakes, but it's just frustrating."
He simply had no interest in discussing his historic feat and stated: "We lost. It doesn't matter."
The shooting guard may be aggrieved and his terrific offensive display may have come in a losing effort but it shouldn't take away from another domination from him on the court.
With Chris Paul missing the encounter with his former team, Harden took on the extra load and as always delivered and did everything he could to try and get the win for Houston.
The Texas-based franchise is now on a two-game losing run and will aim to snap it against the Oklahoma City Thunder in a tasty Christmas Day clash.