In the summer of 2019, NBA superstar and 3x scoring champion, James Harden concluded his Adidas China summer tour with a traffic misdemeanor that is very well known to most expats in Shanghai, China.
That summer pictures started surfacing on Chinese social media platforms of Harden and his clique cruising the streets of downtown Shanghai on electric motorbikes, a favorite means of transportation locally.
It was reported that James and his buddies were driving from their hotel to CaoYang Rd., a busy street downtown when they were apprehended by Shanghai’s finest. Harden’s clique consisted of him on his own bike, his two friends on another bike, and their local fixers on their own bikes.
What the local fixers forgot to warn James about is that, although not wearing a scooter while riding an e-bike in Shanghai is okay, having more than one person on an e-bike at a time is not. (local Shanghai laws make sense right?) Moreover, the group was caught driving in an opposite direction, adding a lane violation to their list of offenses.
And so, unfortunately for Harden, the long hand of the Chinese law caught up to him and his friends which resulted in a hilarious spotting of an NBA superstar getting cited in broad daylight.
When the whole thing blew over, James was quick to respond to his Chinese fans on his official Weibo account to reassure everyone his run-in with the police was innocent and promised to never get caught lacking while in China ever again. Smart move, considering how much money he has tied up there.
This incident makes James the second player to get a scooter citation that we are aware of, apart from J.R. Smith who was cited in Miami in 2011 for not having a valid license while scootering his way around South Beach.