The Houston Rockets need role players to step up to help Harden and Westbrook. Eric Gordon is entering a contract year, and he has every incentive to have a career season with the Rockets.
Eric Gordon has played very well during his three years in Houston. Whether coming off the bench or starting, he is always a threat to score from anywhere on the court. He is also an underrated playmaker as exhibited during injuries to Chris Paul over the past couple of years. The Rockets got a steal when they signed him in the summer of 2016. He has all the ability to be the x-factor to this team.
In a contract year with a championship caliber roster, admittedly there is some pressure on EG. But Gordon has been so clutch over the past two years, especially in the playoffs, it will be hard to see his performance waver.
After a sluggish start to the 2018-19 season, Gordon turned it on late and in the playoffs. He shot a cool 40% from three in the playoffs a capped it off with a seven 3-pointer performance against the Warriors.
I believe the acquisition of Russell Westbrook will be key to help Gordon get more open looks from the field. Chris Paul lost some athleticism last year and could no longer get past his man as he once could. This led to less open shots for everyone as double teams were rare for CP3, limiting ball movement.
Westbrook’s ability to draw a double team on a regular basis when driving will lead to a lot of kick-outs to wide open shooters. This will help Eric Gordon get open shots, as well as drive to the rim and score or draw contact, something he has really gotten good at over the past couple of years.
EG is a pretty low-key guy, but managed to speak over the summer to Keisha Nicole of 97.9 The Box about the trade for Westbrook.
“It’s gonna be really good. He’s that burst that we need. I think he’s gonna work out well for our team”
Gordon is also someone who has proven to be able to defend multiple positions, and I think he doesn’t get the credit he deserves for being built so strong and quick. His NBA 2k rating is also a joke, something colleague Dan Crouch covered.
Looking forward, Eric Gordon, along with guys like P.J. Tucker, Danuel House, among others will be called upon to hit wide open threes. If they can hit a decent clip (at least 35% from 3), the Rockets will be able to compete with anyone thanks to the greatness of James Harden and Westbrook.
After all the trade rumors us Rockets fans have heard this summer alone, we should be happy that we kept Eric Gordon. He is a reliable, clutch shooter who the Rockets should try to hold on for a while.