Eric Gordon

eric-gordon-indiana-hoosiers
Photo: Getty

Eric Gordon is an American basketball player from Indianapolis, Indiana. He attended Indiana University and was selected 7th overall in the 2008 NBA Draft. He has played for the Los Angeles Clippers, New Orleans Hornets/Pelicans, and Houston Rockets. He is well known for his offensive prowess. In 2016-2017, he was named the NBA Sixth Man of the Year.

  • Name: Eric Ambrose Gordon Jr
  • Position: Shooting Guard
  • Nationality: American
  • Age: 31 years old
  • Birthday: December 25, 1988
  • Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
  • High School: North Central High School (Indianapolis, Indiana)
  • Height: 6’4″ (1.93 m)
  • Weight: 215 lb (98 kg
  • Seasons: 1 (2007-2008)
  • Jersey: #23 / #10
  • NBA Draft: 2008 / Round 1 / 7th overall (by the Los Angeles Clippers)
  • Professional Career:
    • Los Angeles Clippers (2008-2011)
    • New Orleans Hornets/Pelicans (2011-2016)
    • Houston Rockets (2016-Present)

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Eric Gordon’s Seasons with the Hoosiers

2007-2008 Indiana Basketball Season
Kelvin Sampson / Dan Dakich (Int.)
25-8 (14-4 Big Ten)
🥉 3rd Place Big Ten
🏅 NCAA First Round

Eric Gordon’s Indiana University Statistics

Season GP GS MIN AVG FG FGA PCT FG FGA PCT FT FTA PCT OFF DEF TOT AVG PF FO AST AST/G T/O BLK STL PTS AVG
2007-2008 32 32 1110 34.7 184 425 0.433 70 208 0.337 231 277 0.834 23 81 104 3.3 69 0 78 2.4 115 20 42 669 20.9
Career 32 32 1110 34.7 184 425 0.433 70 208 0.337 231 277 0.834 23 81 104 3.3 69 0 78 2.4 115 20 42 669 20.9

Eric Gordon’s High School Career and Recruiting

Eric Gordon attended North Central High School in Indianapolis. He played on the varsity team all four years. As a senior, he scored 50 points twice and dropped 43 points in a nationally televised ESPN game against Loyola Academy (Wilmette, Illinois). Gordon led the Panthers to the Indiana 4A title game that season, but eventually lost to Purdue recruit and future NBA player E’Twaun Moore’s East Chicago Central.

Photo: AP/Tom Strattman

Gordon finished the year averaging 29 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 3.3 assists. He shot 57% from the field, 46.2% from three, and 77.9% from the free-throw line. He was named the 2007 Indiana Mr. Basketball and a McDonald’s All-American.

Gordon was also on one of the greatest AAU teams in history, playing alongside notable names like Greg Oden, Mike Conley Jr, Josh McRoberts, Daequan Cook, and Mark Titus. Later, Gordon would switch AAU teams to play with Derrick Rose in hopes of convincing him to commit to the same school as Gordon.

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Catching up on those Mean Streets days #adidashoops

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Eric Gordon’s Recruitment

Early on, Gordon was heavily recruited by several schools, including Duke, Notre Dame, and Arizona. As a sophomore, Gordon gave a verbal commitment to Illinois and coach Bruce Weber in 2005. He and his family noted at the time that the proximity to Indianapolis and Illinois’ success with guards contributed to his commitment.

However, in 2006, there were a few indications that Gordon’s future was not yet set in stone. First and foremost, Mike Davis resigned from IU. There had always been murmurs, although never confirmed, that Gordon was not a big fan of Davis and that’s why the Hoosiers weren’t on his radar. Then, new Indiana coach Kelvin Sampson hired Jeff Meyer as an assistant coach. Meyer was the college basketball coach of Gordon’s father and a longtime family friend.

Soon after, Gordon reportedly indicated to Sampson that Indiana was back on his radar, but Gordon continued to reaffirm publicly his allegiance to Illinois. Still, Sampson began to recruit Gordon. Even with Sampson’s recruitment, Gordon appeared to be set on Illinois. In July 2006, Gordon decided to switch AAU teams to play with Derrick Rose to try to convince Rose to come with him to Illinois.

Rumors continued to swirl that Gordon may decommit, largely fueled by the momentum of the reemergence of the Indiana program. In September, Gordon and Rose took an unofficial visit to Indiana and scrimmaged with several Hoosier players. A little over a month later Gordon’s father announced that he was switching his commitment and, within a few weeks, Gordon signed his letter of intent with Indiana on November 8, 2006.

While the NCAA does not regulate verbal commitments, many coaches and media were critical of Sampson, claiming his actions crossed the line and were borderline unethical. Gordon’s decommitment was particularly devastating to Illinois. The Illini had not recruited another shooting guard and were left scrambling for a replacement after all of the quality recruits were already taken. As a result, Illinois fans were livid and sent Gordon hate mail.

In February 2008, Indiana visited Illinois and the fans anger toward Gordon was palpable. The crowd booed every time he touched the ball and frequently chanted “Liar! Liar!” throughout the game. Illinois fans also pelted the Indiana fan section (that included Gordon’s family) with ice, water bottles, and beads. Surprised by the harassment, Gordon’s father turned around and flipped off the crowd at one point during the game. The Illinois administration later issued a public apology for the incident.

Eric Gordon’s Indiana University Career

Upon arriving in Bloomington, Gordon met all expectations on the court and was an instant star. In his only season at Indiana, Gordon started all 32 games and averaged 34.7 minutes per game. Gordon averaged 20.9 points, 3.3 rebounds, 2.4 assists, and 1.3 steals per game while shooting 43.3% from the field and 33.7% from three. His only blemish was turning the ball over about 3.6 times a game. Despite posting impressive numbers, Gordon’s productivity was hampered by an injured wrist and resulted in a shooting slump in the second half of the season which dragged down his percentages.

He finished the season as IU’s all-time leading freshman scorer with 669 points. He won several accolades, including Big Ten Freshman of the Year, First Team All Big Ten (alongside teammate DJ White), and third team All-American.

As a team, Indiana went 25-8 overall and finished third in the Big Ten with a 14-4 record in conference. The Hoosiers were a #8 seed in the NCAA Tournament but lost in the first round to #9 seeded Arkansas.

Eric Gordon’s Professional Career

Gordon decided to leave Indiana after his freshman season and declared for the 2008 NBA Draft. At the time, Sampson had recently been forced to resign due to NCAA violations. Gordon has stated that new Hoosier coach Tom Crean did not try to convince Gordon to return but rather encouraged him to declare, agreeing that it was the best career move. In preparing for the draft, Gordon worked with famed trainer Tim Grover, as well as former Notre Dame point guard Chris Thomas. He was selected #7 overall by the Los Angeles Clippers.

During the NBA Summer League, Gordon dropped 23 points in his first game and looked very impressive before injuring his hamstring. After recovering, he scored 33 points in 31 minutes in his second exhibition game with the Clippers.

In his first season in the NBA, Gordon started 65 games and averaged 16.1 points, 2.8 assists, and 2.6 rebounds while shooting 38.9% from three. Gordon was named the NBA Western Conference Rookie of the Month for January and, during that month, scored 41 points in a game which broke Blake Griffin’s Clippers franchise record for most points scored by a rookie. Gordon finished fifth in Rookie of the Year voting.

He posted similar numbers in his second season and participated in the Slam Dunk Contest during All-Star weekend. Then, in 2010-11, Gordon had a breakout season both internationally and in the NBA. He won a gold medal in the 2010 FIBA World Championship. While limited to only 56 games with the Clippers, he averaged 22.3 points, 4.4 assists, 2.9 rebounds, and 1.3 steals.

Los Angeles Times columnist Bill Plaschke wrote in 2010, “Clippers fans begin every game focused on Blake Griffin but, like me, I’m guessing they end every game watching Eric Gordon.”

Gordon was then traded to New Orleans as part of a deal for Chris Paul. In his first game with the Hornets, Gordon re-aggravated a knee injury that left him limited to only nine appearances. After the season, the Phoenix Suns offered Gordon a four-year deal for $58 million, which was then matched by the Hornets to keep him in New Orleans. He had three more productive years in New Orleans, two of which were hampered by knee and shoulder injuries.

In July 2016, Gordon signed with the Houston Rockets.

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Signed, sealed, delivered 🚀🚀🚀🚀

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Gordon quickly became a mainstay with the Rockets. In 2016-2017, Gordon broke the record for most three-pointers from a player off the bench. He went on to receive the NBA Six Man of the Year Award (the first Rocket to ever win the award) and won the Three-Point Shooting Contest during All-Star weekend. During his time with Houston, he has been a consistent offensive threat and put together several impressive playoff performances including 24 point and 30 point games against the Golden State Warriors.

Eric Gordon’s Family

Eric Gordon’s two brothers also played college basketball. Evan Gordon played for Liberty, Arizona State, and Indiana. Evan later went on to found the EG3 Basketball Academy in Indianapolis. Eron Gordon played for Seton Hall and Valparaiso. Eron also documents his college basketball journey on YouTube.

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