6 best fits for Eric Gordon on 2022 trade deadline


The 2022 NBA trade deadline is February 10, so rumors are escalating and there will surely be deals coming up soon. The Houston Rockets, with several good complementary players on short-term contracts, are a major player at maturity this season. Over the past few seasons, the Rockets have been a team ready to offload assets for useful players on the trade deadline. However, this season they will be the team looking for top notch assets.

No player will spark more interest in Houston than goaltender Eric Gordon. The veteran is a seasoned playoff contributor with a versatile skill set on both ends of the pitch. He’s a skilled secondary ball handler, reliable 3-point shooter and multi-position defender. He’s also quick on the foot and strong enough to play defensively in a switching pattern. Gordon is also healthy and playing very well for the Rockets right now (14.6 points per game from 61.8% real shots). There are few players out there who could bring more value to a playoff team than Gordon, and Houston will line up a ton of calls for him.

So the drill here is all about finding the best field adjustments for Gordon. Of course, there are some mitigating factors that go into a business destination such as the capital project and the corresponding salary, but we’ll prioritize the fit for this list. Houston can probably get more value for Gordon, but all of these can be fallback options if they go elsewhere.

* Watch NBA games LIVE with fuboTV (click for free trial)*

Eric Gordon’s best trades for the Rockets

1. Los Angeles Clippers

If the Clippers are serious about becoming contenders when Paul George and Kawhi Leonard are healthy this season, Eric Gordon is a great candidate for this team. The organization has just struggled to put together a competent custody game around Leonard and George since arriving in Los Angeles. Gordon adds an element of dribbling penetration and away scoring threat that they don’t currently have. The Clippers are also sorely lacking a defender who can take on quick guards.

Since they’re also very keen on resting players, Gordon is someone who can help keep their heads above water when George or Leonard sit down in the future. It may cost them a near-expiring contract with Eric Bledsoe and a pair of second-round picks, but if the franchise isn’t in full swing at this point, what do they do?

2. Brooklyn Nets

Brooklyn’s inclusion on the list is based on the potential for both franchises to go nuclear by the trade deadline. This means the Rockets are moving Christian Wood in addition to Gordon, and the Nets decide Kyrie Irving is no longer worth the headache. It’s a full long shot and probably won’t happen, but that’s not the point of this list. This list tries to find the best candidates for Eric Gordon’s talents. Few spots fit him more like a glove than the Brooklyn Nets.

Everyone now knows Gordon can fit in fairly neatly alongside James Harden, he’s an additional defender in the backcourt and he can play both at home and on the road which Irving can’t. It’s hard to argue that he doesn’t make the current Nets a much better basketball team and less dependent on Kevin Durant and Harden becoming a supernova for regular season wins. Again, it’s unlikely, but it’s worth talking about.

3. Phoenix Suns

The Suns may be a team that is very reluctant to move the boat on the trade deadline. They’ve already released their 2022 first-round pick and they already have a decent guard rotation. However, if they wanted to bolster their bench units, Gordon is quite positionally malleable. The Rockets have used him as a small forward and shooting guard, and he would add defensive versatility alongside Chris Paul and Devin Booker when they’re stunned that Cameron Payne doesn’t. As with Harden, we already know that Gordon can play alongside Chris Paul without a hitch.

The Suns could go eccentric with smallball formations like Paul, Booker, Gordon, Mikal Bridges and Jae Crowder to counter the Warriors when they face Draymond Green in the middle. It’s just food for thought, but if the Suns are an active deadline team and can’t get someone bigger like Harrison Barnes by the deadline, Gordon makes sense.

4. Cleveland Cavaliers

It will be really fascinating to see which direction the Cavaliers decide to go at the trade deadline. It is clearly a growing team, but still very young in essence. If they decide that Evan Mobley, Jarrett Allen, and Darius Garland form a strong enough core to start building, forging a first-round pick to complete that core might not be so painful. Gordon makes a lot of sense here, but it’s really hard to find a matching salary to give Houston that has no value. It may be easier to build a trade where they give Houston a young player as an asset with no first-round pick. The adjustment on the pitch makes sense as Cleveland doesn’t have the punch Collin Sexton gave them before retiring for the season.

5. Dallas Mavericks

The Mavericks are in a bit of a bind when it comes to trying to trade. Due to Stepien’s Rule, they can’t move a first-round pick until 2025. As for the capital draft, you’re pretty much talking about second-round picks (like the Clippers). They have a salary equivalent to Dwight Powell and Josh Green, and since Green is only 21, there is a possibility that they could get away with building a trade with only second-round picks. Gordon would certainly help the Mavericks on the defensive end of the ball, replacing Luka Doncic, Tim Hardaway Jr., Jalen Brunson and Reggie Bullock.

More importantly, Dallas is currently among the worst 3-point teams in basketball (26th in percentage), so Gordon would give them a boost immediately. Like many of those destinations, it’s likely a fallback trade for Houston if Rafael Stone isn’t able to snag a first-round pick, but it makes sense from a basketball perspective.

6. Los Angeles Lakers

The Lakers are incredibly limited in what they can do on the trade deadline. As for the capital project, they traded most of it and end up with second towers to move. Also, a large chunk of their salary is tied to LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook that it is very difficult to build trades on the margins. One player emerges as an important asset for Los Angeles: Talen Horton-Tucker. Horton-Tucker is only 21 years old and has a tall height for a guard (6ft 4in with a 7ft wingspan).

He also has a living wage ($ 9.5 million owed in 2021-2022), so you can use that as an asset and a matching salary. The complication here is that Houston needs roster spots before executing such a trade, and it should happen on January 14 or later. Gordon does make sense, however, as a ground spacer and defender alongside Westbrook, James and Davis. He would immediately become someone to shut down Lakers games.

Rudy Gobert, Donovan Mitchell, Jazz