With the Houston Rockets surging and Eric Gordon not fully healthy, should the Rockets allow Gordon to rest until he has a clean bill of health?
Over the course of Eric Gordon‘s four seasons with the Houston Rockets he’s shown his importance and significance to the team. A good example of this was the Rockets’ recent road victory against the Utah Jazz on January 27th.
If you recall, the Rockets were without James Harden, Russell Westbrook and Clint Capela but EG dropped 50 points on the Jazz and carried the Rockets to victory. Gordon had a true shooting percentage of 81.2 percent and only needed 22 shots to drop a 50-piece during that game, which are both impressive feats.
Unfortunately Gordon has battled injuries in a major way this season, as he’s already missed 28 games on the year. To put that in perspective, Gordon has missed 34 total games over his previous three seasons in Houston, so he’s certainly faced his fair share of bruises over the course of the season.
The Rockets have gone 19-9 without Gordon this season, which is not to say they don’t need him, but noteworthy considering where we are in the regular season. The Rockets have only 24 games left and will certainly need Gordon during the postseason, as he’s capable of being the Rockets’ third-leading scorer on any given night.
On top of that, Gordon is one of the best defenders across the league, as he has a defensive field goal percentage of 33.5 percent, which is second in the league among players who have played in at least 15 games. Gordon’s scoring ability and lockdown defensive ability will be pivotal for the Rockets’ chances of postseason success, so it makes sense for the Rockets to allow him to rest until he’s fully healthy.
Gordon’s presence could allow the Rockets to reduce the minutes of Russell Westbrook during the playoffs, which will come in handy considering the fact that Russ won’t be able to sit out games like he’s done during the regular season.
Gordon’s presence will also take the scoring burden off of James Harden and Russ, as long as EG has a clean bill of health. And him being out in the meantime will allow players like DeMarre Carroll, Austin Rivers, Ben McLemore and Jeff Green to get more playing time, which will only benefit the Rockets down the stretch and in the playoffs. On top of that, there’s no benefit in him fighting through an injury and potentially delaying his recovery.
Since the playoffs are right around the corner and the Rockets have had success in Gordon’s absence, it would be wise to let him rest and get fully healthy. Especially since Mike D’Antoni has actually been trusting his bench and giving minutes to the Rockets’ reserves.