Video: Giannis Antetokounmpo Pass Goes Astray, Hits James Harden on the Head and Floors Him

James Harden, Houston Rockets
James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets watches the action against the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on November 5, 2018 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Andy Lyons/Getty Images

James Harden was victim of a bizarre incident on Wednesday night, when he was floored by a Giannis Antetokounmpo pass that had gone astray.

With just over nine minutes left in the fourth quarter, the Greek Freak was backing down against rockets forward P.J. Tucker, when he whipped the ball towards the corner where Bucks' point guard Malcolm Brogdon was standing.

Read more: Can James Harden win MVP again? Rockets star scores 44 points as Houston beats Golden State

Sadly for the Bucks, Harden was in the way. Unfortunately for the reigning MVP, however, he was not looking toward the ball, which hit him right above the temple and floored him straight away.

Giannis had enough of Harden’s antics. Hold this.

— Rob Perez (@WorldWideWob) January 10, 2019

Harden was left seeing stars for a few seconds, before eventually getting up relatively unscathed. Footage of the incident immediately went viral and Harden explained after the game he had no chance of evading the trajectory of the ball.

"Hell no, I didn't see it coming," he told ESPN SportsCenter.

"That s**t hurt. I didn't even know what happened."

The first meeting of the campaign between Harden and Antetokounmpo had been billed as a showdown between two of the favorites to be named MVP this season and it lived up to the hype.

The Rockets star had 42 points, 11 rebounds and six assists, the sixth time in the last eight games he has scored 40 or more points. Harden also set a new NBA record by scoring at least 30 points and dishing out at least five assists in the last 14 consecutive games, while his 33.7 points per game is the highest scoring average in the league since Kobe Bryant averaged 35.4 points per outing in the 2005-06 season.

Antetokounmpo could not match Harden's scoring but was just as influential, finishing with 27 points, five assists and a season-high 21 rebounds and inspiring the Bucks to a 116-109 road win in Houston.

Milwaukee trailed by six points at halftime, before the Rockets' offense stagnated during the third quarter leaving the Bucks nine ahead entering the final period, which was enough to see them home.

Antetokounmpo and Harden are both enjoying incredible seasons. The former is averaging 26.6 points, 12.6 rebounds and six assists per game, while the latter delivers 33.7 points, 5.9 rebounds and 8.7 assists per outing.

Asked about whether the win put him ahead of Harden in the race for MVP, the Greek Freak insisted team goals, rather than individual accolades, were his only focus.

"All I care about is winning," he told The Associated Press. "I know by winning and doing whatever it takes to help your teammates and leaving everything out on the floor everything will take care of itself, the titles and all that."

The Bucks improved to 29-11 with the win to move atop the Eastern Conference, while the Rockets slipped to 23-17 and remain sixth in the Western Conference standings.