Why the Houston Rockets shouldn’t trade for Aaron Gordon
There is obvious interest on the Houston Rockets’ side in bringing in Gordon. Gordon is a versatile power forward who would fit nicely next to Wood. There are concerns, however, when it comes to a trade for Gordon.
He has missed significant time the last two years with injuries, and Gordon hasn’t shown great improvements on the offensive end, as his scoring outputs have dropped in the last few years.
This could be from the injuries or being on a Magic team that has struggled to remain competitive. It’s hard to say, but if you plan on trading away a first-round pick, you have to be sure Gordon will take the next step. The first two games back for Gordon after his latest injuries sums up his play over the last few years.
In his first game back versus the Brooklyn Nets Gordon was terrific. Gordon had a season-high 38 points on 7-of-8 shooting from 3-point range in the win.
The next game, though, Gordon only had 12 points on 3-of-13 shooting in a loss to the Boston Celtics. This is the dilemma of trading for Gordon. Gordon is an above-average to sometimes elite on-ball defender who is super athletic and when on his game, he can fill up the box score.
The problem is Gordon is also a player who can disappear for long stretches and recently has dealt with several injuries that have kept him out of the lineup. Gordon’s game has plateaued the last few years, averaging 16.0 points,14.4 points, and this season 14.7 points per game.
When trading for any player using first-round picks, you are looking for a player who is already a star or can take the next step. As I previously explained, a trade for John Collins would be the better route for the Rockets.
Of course, a trade involves more than one team, and with the Hawks playing a lot better recently, they may not feel the need to trade away a player like Collins. First-round picks, especially for the Rockets, are precious at this point, and a trade that involves multiple picks for Gordon may not be the best use of those assets.