James Harden Is Being Questioned By Officials For... Traveling?

The sound seems to build slowly, like a jet engine in those moments before it roars. But it really only takes a few seconds and roughly 73 James Harden dribbles.

There has been a similar reaction over the years in Oracle Arena as the Warriors take off on a fast break, with the crowd noise rising as the play heads towards the anticipated splash. And maybe the similar reactions indicate something about the success of the teams as they head toward the showdown so many have expected for so long.

With the Rockets, Harden forces a switch, finds a mismatch and then wanders for a few moments to size up the unfortunate defender that has no business being left alone on him on the perimeter. When the crossover dribbles begin, the crowd noise and hopeful excitement build.

All of this, however, comes in complete contrast to the reaction in such moments just a couple seasons ago.

Perhaps that was an overreaction in the final season with Dwight Howard poorly cast as Harden's teammate.

Back then, Charles Barkley, who now champions Harden's MVP worthiness, mockingly pantomimed Harden's dribble, dribble, dribble style. Barkley might not keep up with every development, but he does do a fine (and often comically adept) job representing casual viewers, who have come to appreciate Harden's one-on-one artistry.