Let me preface this by saying that if the Sixers get Aaron Gordon with their first lottery pick, I’m becoming a Pelicans fan. I decided to look at Aaron Gordon, since I kept getting him in the ESPN 2014 NBA Draft Mock Draft Machine. Okay, now onto the kid.
Aaron Gordon is a 6-9, 212 lb power forward, currently with the University of Arizona for his freshman season. This season, he is averaging 12.4 points and 8.0 rebounds on 51 percent shooting and 37 percent from deep. He’s playing around 30 minutes per game for the Wildcats and taking just under 10 shots per game.
The youngster is 18 years old and has a wingspan of 6-11.5, with a standing reach of 8-10. Physically, this kid is a freak. He’s been compared to Blake Griffin numerous times and it’s not just because the two look similar. Gordon is a prime candidate for alley oops and beautiful things of that nature.
Gordon does possess extreme athleticism, but his frame is very small right now. At only 212 lbs, Gordon will need to put on about 20 or 30 lbs to handle the bruising in the NBA. Most of his highlights at Arizona this season are alley-oops and put-backs, his game needs to be polished. Gordon can be a threat in transition as soon as he comes to the NBA, but his forward skills are still raw.
The jump shot isn’t really there and neither is a refined post game. But really, who has a post game anymore? Regardless, I’m not really liking Aaron Gordon on the Sixers.
He is a project. He will take time to develop, more time than this city will allow. He has no jump shot to speak of, so he really doesn’t fit with Nerlens Noel at all. Gordon obviously can’t played center with Noel in the fold. The Sixers can’t have a power forward and center with both no mid range jumper to speak of, the spacing would be terrible. This is why someone like Embiid makes sense on the Sixers, because he can play center predominately. The Sixers just can’t draft someone that won’t space the floor, Gordon basically has the same offensive game that Noel does. That’s a terrible combination to put on the floor, especially in the half court.
One area he has impressed me, is on the defensive side of the ball. He’s played great defense this season, especially in isolation situations against other forwards. This season against Michigan, Aaron Gordon was placed on Glenn Robinson III in the second half after Robinson was torching the ‘Cats in the first half. Gordon held Robinson III to four points in the second half and Arizona won the game.
Earlier in the season, Gordon held stud freshman, Jabari Parker, to 7-21 shooting.
I’d love to see Gordon stay in school another year and work on his jump shot. This would help his stock out tremendously, because as of right now, he’s just an athlete. Besides as a roll man, Gordon is virtually useless in the P-n-R game. His athleticism is elite, but that won’t help in the half court. I’m not trying to knock the kid either, he can play and there’s a reason he’s slated to go early in the lottery.
I just don’t see a fit with the Sixers. Nerlens Noel would ideally be playing power forward next season, especially if his mid range jump shot is consistent. Brett Brown works with Noel before every game on his jumper, so I expect something that looks half decent by the time he’s on the floor. Aaron Gordon would be a terror on the break with Michael Carter-Williams, but a mess in the half court.
If the Sixers fall in the No. 6 to No. 8 range in the draft, where Gordon is supposed to be selected, Hinkie would be smart to package together some picks and attempt to move up in the draft. It would be very difficult to get into the top three or four, but even if the Sixers can move up to No. 5 and grab Dante Exum.
I would rather see the Sixers come out of the first-round with Dante Exum, than a combination of Aaron Gordon and Gary Harris/Rodney Hood. I’m not sure how everyone else feels about this, but that’s just me.
Gordon is an exceptional athlete, but he’s raw right now. He’s just an athlete. He will create some highlight reel plays, but I don’t want to see him on the Sixers.
Tags: 2014 NBA Draft 76ers Aaron Gordon Arizona Brett Brown Dante Exum Featured Gary Harris Michael Carter-Williams NBA NBA Draft Nerlens Noel Philadelphia 76ers Popular Rodney Hood Sam Hinkie Sixers University Of Arizona