Rockets guard Eric Gordon thinks dynamic with Russell Westbrook instead of Chris Paul won’t be that much different
The Houston Rockets made one of the biggest offseason moves this summer when they traded veteran guard Chris Paul to the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for former MVP, Russell Westbrook. Although there’s a big difference between the talents of those two, Rockets guard Eric Gordon believes that the team’s playing style wouldn’t change a lot.
In an interview with The Athletic’s Kelly Iko, Gordon said that the Rockets will have to play the way they did back when Paul was still with the team, as he feels making significant adjustments would just hurt the team.
“I’m pretty sure it will be pretty similar. It just has to be that way. You’re going to have times where James is the point guard, and Russ is the point guard. Just work it out from there, and I think it will just be better that way. I wouldn’t say we would change too much from that perspective.”
The Rockets have failed to win a championship with a James Harden-Paul backcourt, which eventually resulted in the team trading the latter away. Westbrook, who’s still in his prime, already played with Harden during their Oklahoma City Thunder days, so he’s familiar with Harden’s playing style.
But over the past couple of years, Westbrook has earned the reputation of stagnating his team’s offense. Although he has averaged a triple-double in each of the last three seasons, that hasn’t been enough to get his team past the Western Conference Finals. As for Harden, he has been known to struggle in pressure situations, which is one of the main reasons why the Rockets haven’t been able to beat the Golden State Warriors in the playoffs.
So, whether Gordon admits it or not, the Rockets will need to make adjustments both as individuals and as a team if they want to succeed.