This past June, a trade with the Detroit Pistons made twenty-nine year-old Ben Gordon the highest paid player on the Charlotte Bobcats roster. The trade, in which the Bobcats gave up Corey Maggette, also landed Charlotte a protected first round pick. The ‘Cats have Gordon locked in for one year (at twelve million), with a player option (of thirteen million) upcoming after this season.
Gordon, entering his ninth year in the league, brings over four years of playoff experience (all with the Chicago Bulls) to the team. He is a career 16.5 point per game scorer, shooting almost forty-four percent from the field and forty percent from deep. Although he has flirted with close to three assists or rebounds a season, Gordon’s only defined use on the court is getting buckets – something the Bobcats desperately need.
Gordon’s points per game have dropped off slightly over the past few season; however, that can be a direct result of a decrease in minutes while in Detroit. Last season, both of his shooting percentages from the floor remained higher than his career averages – as well as his free throw percentage. There is no doubt that Gordon can still shoot the basketball – and, again, something very much needed on the Bobcats’ roster, as they were the league’s worst in three point shooting last year
Look for Gordon to start alongside Kemba Walker, or Ramon Session, and play a majority of the team’s minutes at the two-guard position. He should also be able to help mentor the likes of Walker, and Gerald Henderson – another necisity regarding the ‘Cat’s young roster.
- Dave Hilts