Hornets Beat: Eric Gordon

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Published: July 5, 2012

Our writers answer five burning questions about Eric Gordon.

Maybe this is all that Gordon meant when he said his heart was in Phoenix.

1. On a scale of 1-10, how disappointed are you in Gordon’s comment that his “heart is in Phoenix?”

James Grayson: 9, and it’s not 10 because he’s not Chris Paul and he hasn’t been in the city of New Orleans for long. I lived in Phoenix for four months and I stayed in New Orleans for five days. I can assure you that New Orleans is the better city.

Michael McNamara: 5. Honestly, what he said doesn’t bother me as much as the fact that it just doesn’t make sense to say it. What is the upside? Have you heard Roy Hibbert say anything about his heart being in Portland? It serves no purpose. Just wait to see how it plays out and then lie to whichever fan base supports the team that gave you $58 million, telling them your heart is in ‘their’ city.

Jake Madison: 7. I feel like the point of that statement was to try and force the Hornets not to match the contract offer. No other restricted free agent has said anything like that.

Mason Ginsberg: 8. To release that kind of statement giving another organization that kind of praise isn’t only a slap in the face to the Hornets and the city of New Orleans, but it’s also just stupid. What does he have to gain by saying something like that? His leverage is incredibly limited in this situation; if he believed that those words would keep the Hornets from matching the Suns’ offer, he clearly lacks an understanding of how the NBA works.

Joe Gerrity: 8. All I can think is that his agent talked with Phoenix and they worked out a possible way to lower the the Hornets asking price in a sign and trade. Let’s be real– it’s not as simple as just matching and moving on now. There’s a relationship to be repaired between Gordon, the team, and the fans. The Hornets had all the cards prior to this.

2. If your hand was forced and you had to do a match, then trade with Houston, what would you be asking for in return?

JG: I’d be asking for Kevin Martin, Donatas Motiejunas, Royce White or an unprotected first round pick. It’s quite a lot, but I believe there’s a number of teams lining up for Eric Gordon, so someone has to pay the price for a maximum contract guy.

MM: Give me Kyle Lowry, Donatas Montiejunas, and Terrance Jones. I know Montiejunas wants to come over, but I try to get him to stay overseas and up his trade value, then eventually move him down the road. I move Lowry to Toronto for their 2013 1st and Ed Davis. Then, with Darius Miller, Terrance Jones, and SkyNet, I recreate UK’s championship front line. Next year I got a nice young core, tons of cap room, a trade chip in Montiejunas, and two likely top 10 picks. (update: Rockets are trading Lowry to Toronto for a lottery pick, so the heavy lifting has been done for us!)

JM: Since Houston is in the division, the price goes up for them. I ask for Lowry, Montiejunas, White and at least one pick.

MG: I would offer Jack and Gordon for Kyle Lowry, Kevin Martin, Donatas Motiejūnas, Jeremy Lamb, and next year’s first round pick. The Rockets are building for the future right now; with their current roster, they’re a lottery team for sure, so that first round pick could have some value. With Dragic heading to Phoenix and Lin likely staying with New York, I’m not sure how likely it is that they part with Lowry unless they get another PG in return.

Joe: Jack and Gordon for Lowry, Motiejūnas, next year’s first rounder, a future second rounder, and either White or Lamb.

3. If your hand was forced and you had to do a sign and trade with Phoenix, what would you be asking for in return?

JG: I would ask for Kendall Marshall, Marcin Gortat and an unprotected first round pick (and a salary filler). Marshall would be the point guard of the future and would allow Austin Rivers to play a more natural Shooting-Guard position. Gortat is on a very valuable contract of 7.5 million a year. The first round pick would almost likely be a lottery one.

MM: Exact same trade as James ideally. Gortat is a must. Then give me 2 out of the following three: Jared Dudley, Kendall Marshall, unprotected 2013 pick. Throw in Lakers 2013 1st-rounder too. I actually prefer that package to any that Houston could offer. If they refuse to include Gortat, they would have to give me everything else, 3-4 1st rounders, Marshall, Lopez, and Dudley.

JM: I agree with James. I want Marshall, Gortat and the Suns’ unprotected first–not one of the Lakers’ picks.

MG: Kendall Marshall, Marcin Gortat, and the Suns’ 2013 and 2014 first round picks (they can give up those picks in back-to-back years because they now have the Lakers’ 2013 first round pick).  A lineup of something close to Dragic/Gordon/Beasley/Morris/Frye is nowhere near playoff-caliber, which should make both of those picks quite valuable. Let’s see how badly the Suns really want Gordon.

Joe: I’m not dying for Gortat frankly, since I think the center position can be addressed for the long term in a better way. Plus he’s a free agent in two years. In my world we need a third team– like Sacramento– to come in. I’ll spare you the details, but we get good young talent, future picks, and zero long term contacts.

4. If Hornets simply match, how worried (scale of 1-10) are you that Gordon will be a disturbance in the locker room?

JG: 5. I know it might seem optimistic here to expect Gordon not to be a problem, but I think it will be fine. Hopefully after a season Eric might realise that he’s on a good team and apart of a stellar up and coming organisation.

MM: 2. Honestly, if the Hornets match, this is a non-issue by the time training camp opens. My bigger fear is that Gordon knows that Anthony Davis will be the face of the franchise sooner or later, and he is a guy who would rather be ‘the man’ than a winner if he had to choose between the two. I would rather Davis just start out as the face of the franchise from day one, like Durant did, rather than have these two wrestle with this issue as Davis catches up to Gordon, then eventually passes him. I don’t think Gordon will take too kindly to that.

JM: 1. I don’t think that Monty WIlliams will let any sort of locker room drama fly. Plus, I’m sure once Gordon’s checks start getting deposited that he’ll quiet down.

MG: 3. He won’t be a distraction in the locker room; my only concern is how long it will take for the fans to move past his recent comments and get behind him again. He should be able to do some damage control if he ends up staying in New Orleans, but after what happened with Chris Paul a year ago, fans won’t forgive him overnight.

Joe: 5. I never would have thought he was the type of guy to come out and essentially throw the city of New Orleans under the bus after a day in Arizona. Now that he has, I can’t see him any other way. I don’t think it will be loud and obvious, but if he really wants to go elsewhere and winds up in New Orleans anyway, I could see him being a minor distraction on occasion. What if, for example, Austin Rivers is occasionally the go-to guy for last second shots? I could see Gordon pouting about it. I could also see the fans HATING him if he were to sit out with anything but the most serious of injuries. That’s where I see a real possibility for off the court issues.

5. Gut feeling: How do you see this situation playing out?

JG: I really believe the Hornets want Eric in New Orleans. If they show him that he’s the center of their focus then I believe he stays and is happy. Any time a person gets $58 million he should be happy no matter what city he’s in. This whole thing has been about leverage and Gordon’s agent was not very happy with the Hornets not giving his client an extension months ago. This released statement is a way of getting back at the Hornets. Let’s hope that things work out for the best because Gordon can be a leader for this organisation.

MM: Unfortunately, I think Demps matches and the Hornets try to make it work. I think they will eventually regret it if they take that route, simply because of the issue I brought up in my last response. NBA players have egos, and I just don’t see Gordon stepping aside to play second banana to a guy who is 4-5 years younger. When Seattle drafted Durant, they shipped out Ray Allen and let Rashard Lewis walk. I think the Hornets should do the same, but I fear that they will try to blaze their own path rather than follow the example that the Sonics/Thunder laid out for them.

JM: The Hornets will match, but expect them to explore every trade option–not just to the Suns or Rockets. However, I see Gordon being dealt later than sooner.

MG: This one is tough. I love Gordon’s game and want him to be here, but we can’t forget that the Suns offered max money ($14.5 million per season) to a guy who hasn’t proven that he can stay healthy. If the Hornets can get sufficient value in the form of draft picks and young talent while saving a ton of money in the process, it’s an option that they have to explore. Ultimately, though, it’s clear that Dell Demps really wants Gordon to be the leader of this team, so it’s nowhere near a sure thing that he gets dealt purely because of his comments. I’ll put slightly better odds on him staying than him going, but if dealer Dell gets an offer that he can’t pass up, he now has extra motivation to send Gordon packing.

Joe: I tend to believe that someone will come up with an offer that’s of good value, and Dell will send Gordon packing. The last thing this franchise needs is a injury plagued SG (who doesn’t want to be here) making max money while riding the pine half the season. It’s simply risky to throw out marginal max contacts so early in a rebuild, and — for good reason– I don’t think Dell takes spending that kind of money lightly.

137 comments
Scott
Scott

There is absolutely no way your getting the Polish Hammer or Marshall. Since we lost Nash it would be stupid to include Marshall who is a potential top PG in this league and The Hammer is our only option at starting Center. Take your pick of Frye or Lopez and we'll throw in this years Lakers 1st round pick and 1 of our 1st round picks lottery protected for the first year, top 10 protected year 2, top 3 protected year 3 and if you don't get it by then it turns in to 2 second rounders in consecutive years. Sorry to break it to you guys but you don't get fair trade value in a sign and trade especially when the guy has made it absolutely clear he wants nothing to do with your team. Maybe if the front office over there had a clue as of what they were doing and treated their stars with respect they wouldn't all be desperate to bolt. I know what's coming now, all the responses are going to sound like this: Your an idiot who doesn't know anything about basketball or our team, that's not enough this is a negotiation, Phoenix Breads non basketball knowledge having @#$%&*?$, your tripping if you think we'll let him go for less than every good player on your team plus 20 unprotected first round picks, But really deep down every single N.O. fan knows I'm right. When a class act like CP3 wants nothing to do with your Organization and then the main piece to that trade wants nothing to do with your Organization there's something major wrong with your Organization. We lost Nash and Amare in the last 3 years but neither of them went to the media asking for trades or releasing statements on how badly they wanted out of Phoenix. In fact it was just the Opposite, they both left under good terms and both made sure we were able to get sign and trade deals for them. They also both released statements saying how much they loved the Phoenix Suns Organization, the fans and the city, so before you get all upset at Phoenix or at Gordon and start asking for the world in a sign and trade maybe you should start asking why can't our front office seem to keep any worth while players happy.

Jason Calmes
Jason Calmes

Restricted free agent. You write alot for someone who hasn't read. If Phoenix doesn't compy with a trade, and we match, Phoenix can't get him. Can't trade after. Where does happiness play in? The deal will be something everyone grumbles about, but I'm thinking a player and 2back-to-back firsts. ValleyOfTheSuns thought it reasonable and so did Hornets247 on the radio show I hosted today. You are welcome.

Josh
Josh

On Celticshub.com, Celtics fans didn't like it. I wonder if y'all will. New Orleans: Avery Bradley, Brandon Bass, 2013 unprotected 1st-round pick Boston: Eric Gordon

IMA Homer
IMA Homer

If the sign and trade is an option. What's stopping NOLA from trading gordon to Charlotte for D.J. Augustin and a 2013 1st rnd pick???

Sean
Sean

Josh is right about Gordon needing to agree. Not to mention that Charlotte's pick will probably be top-3 next year; not sure they'd trade that and DJ for Gordon.

Josh
Josh

Gordon himself. He has to agree to whatever team he goes to in a sign-and-trade.

Josh
Josh

I think we should overpay to get Elton Brand. Give him $8-9 million. He only has one year left on his current deal. We could just let him expire next year and have him take the banging down low. Or we could trade him at the deadline because big expiring contracts are attractive.

Chung
Chung

Anybody want to pick up Elton Brand off the waiver wire? One year deal. could be worth it if he can play spot minutes at Center.

Josh
Josh

This probably isn't likely, but I would pursue Rajon Rondo for Gordon. Maybe we can get a package of Avery Bradley, Brandon Bass, and their firsr-round pick.

Mike P
Mike P

Rondo would be great, but it's just not happening. If anything, we would have to package several people for him, not the other way around

Mike P
Mike P

after the way Rondo played in the playoffs, I just don't think it's possible, even if Boston wants to start fresh (which doesn't seem to be the case). Would be nice for us, but no way Boston does that

Josh
Josh

I meant I would do Rondo for Gordon straight up, but if that didn't work we could do the Avery Bradley trade.

TrinchMan
TrinchMan

Its about time to give up on the Skynet nickname, its not gonna catch on

Chuck
Chuck

It's clearly just a case of him being a spurned lover. I really don't want someone that immature anyway. My question is, has he always felt this angst towards Hornets management or did the Rivers trade push it over the top? Seems like a convenient excuse to me, but who knows maybe he was under the impression we were drafting a big.

Chuck
Chuck

*Rivers selection, I mean

biasvasospasm
biasvasospasm

One thing that should be noted, unrelated to the Eric Gordon issue: two teams in our division are an absolute mess. Houston's roster, as currently constructed, is hilarious. They have half a dozen young, unproven power forwards, no centers if the Bulls match, Earl Boykins and Shaun Livingston at the point, and some old pretty okay players in Scola and Martin who they would be willing to pretty much give away at this point. Dallas is Dirk. That's all. Just Dirk. The division just got much, much, much easier. I'm not saying we should buy in right now. Just that we got the jump on the rebuild, and if we don't mess it up could be the best team in the division in two years.

Ken
Ken

And Memphis just let OJ Mayo go. The Spurs get older every year.

Mikey
Mikey

This may be just my opinion, but my "heart" would at wherever I was offered $58 million too. Look, his agent is a genius. If Gordon had opted to become an unrestricted FA, I think his chances of getting anywhere close to a max contract were basically zero, considering his injury history. By keeping his client restricted, he knows there is a baseline bid for his services, and someone was going to overpay for his player. It looks like it will be the Hornets in this case. He got his player a max contract that he in-no-way deserves, congrats to Gordon and his agent. Im not really upset with Gordon. I get it that he thought he was worth a max contract, and he is all butt-hurt that the Hornets obviously didn't think so. Thats part of negotiations. He needs to take the emotion out of it, and hire a PR person for pete's sake. Make no mistake though, this whole thing was about the $$.

ImSorryMonty
ImSorryMonty

I was relieved actually to see EG10's follow up comments; if for no other reason than it's not the city of NO he dislikes, it's the market testing and the mixed signals of the FO (to him). Proves things can and will get smoothed over. I like Gortat/Marshall/and pick idea but neither of those is a franchise player unless we luck into Shabizz in 2013. Franchise guys don't grow on trees (even injury prone ones). This guy will be a Hornet. If Rivers turns out to what we hope, this is a big 3 to work around with cap space for a 4th. Gordon's departure would once again leave a HUGE hole in our collective offensive skillset. Monty and Dell know this, therefore he will be a Hornet in 2012-13. I'm telling you right now. Jack will be our starting "PG" this season to start but Gordon will be the PG on the court. Book it.

Mike P
Mike P

When I first heard that Gordon didn't want to be here, I was very upset. The last couple days I've been ranting to every friend I could find that we need to get him out of here. But I've calmed down a little. I am still in favor of trying to find a sign/trade, but only if the package is adequate. Gordon is too good to trade away for a marginal haul because our (the fans) feelings are hurt. The truth is that CP3 cracked our ribs and we just haven't healed. Gordon is hardly the first star, quasi-star, or w/e you want to call him to try to force his way out. Frankly, I almost expect it from NBA players now. Anything else is a pleasant surprise (see Durant/Rose). This is a different situation, but Drew Brees didn't really want to be here when he came either. Miami was his first choice, if I remember correctly. And now, despite the tense contract negotiations, he is essentially canonized here. Seriously, go read The Onion's article about how Brees could literally murder someone here and get away with it. It's hysterical. There are very few NBA afflictions that cannot be healed by winning. If Gordon winds up here for 4 years, he's gonna have to suck it up. And he will. And if we start winning, this will all go away. Not quickly, not without bumps here and there, but eventually. In the end, if we do keep Gordon, despite having trade offers on the table, doesn't that show him that we DO plan to build with him?

F******
F******

I tell you what. If he doesn't want to be here, the hornets could just match and trade him to PHX for Marshall, Gortat or Lopez and an unprotected first rounder. Gordon won't play more than 30 Games and Beasley will mess things up (again). So we get another top ten pick next year!

Josh
Josh

I have a feeling that if we wouldn't have won the lottery, Gordon would be more interested. We could've gotten T-Rob, and Gordon may have somehow liked that better v

mojart
mojart

yeah we wil get t-rob with r 1st pick but still we wil get rivers wid the 2nd pick........

mojart
mojart

Joe: I’m not dying for Gortat frankly, since I think the center position can be addressed for the long term in a better way. Plus he’s a free agent in two years. In my world we need a third team– like Sacramento– to come in. I’ll spare you the details, but we get good young talent, future picks, and zero long term contacts. please joe can u spare us the details........i hope it involves cousins and there little PG isiah thomas.....

Sean
Sean

Cousins isn't going anywhere...

LANative
LANative

EG definitely has alienated himself from the Hornets, their fans and the entire Gulf Coast Region. He cannot even compare his displeasure for the Hornets to CP3. CP3 had legitimate rights to be frustrated with Shinn and his administration plus no ownership but even then he exhibited class. He never once dogged our organization and definitely not to the extent EG has. He was actually impressed by an orange carpet, paid employees welcoming him and then the announcer announcing his name while his picture was on the screen at the US Airways Center. Did we have to do all of that after he was traded by the Clippers? Welcome to the real world. Besides, if Phoenix was the place he wanted to play, why did he visit Indiana first? Phoenix needed a fix because the handwriting was on the wall regarding Nash. EG wanted millions for a resume that was filled with time off the court more than time on the court. And if the Suns hadn't bitten he would have carried his show onto Houston. Instead of making the Hornets look bad he has definitely shown us that he is immature and unprofessional. In the ESPN article he said the Suns negotiated better. I guess giving you want you want without earning it makes you better but remember everybody is somebody's fool - FOOL! I guess there is a big difference between dry, desert heat and humidity if EG is the case study.

Ken
Ken

Batum just signed with Minnesota. Even after Portland said it would match any offer and would not agree to a sign and trade. Like Gordon, he says his heart is in Minnesota.

mazonmafia
mazonmafia

He actually said he wanted to play for monty... And then minny offered him lots of cash... :-) seems to change things. I have no doubt his heart is in minny and gordon's is in phx. If someone in phx offered you $58,000,000 wouldnt your heart up and move?? Haha

Lucas Ottoni
Lucas Ottoni

I scorn you, Eric Gordon.

Jason Calmes
Jason Calmes

Lucas is right there with Doghouse with the boiling-over passion, just a man of fewer words. If you ever come to town, you can have my tickets. Love this guy.

Drew
Drew

It doesn't make much sense, after a one-day visit he says "my heart is in Phoenix". I could understand it if he said that about Indy, his hometown and a team that had the third seed in the East, but the Suns have missed the playoffs the last two seasons. People also seem to forget that Steve Nash inflates his teammates' stats, so their current value may be overstated. Either this is a publicity stunt to try to get him a max deal, or a poorly thought out impulse. Or maybe he's intimidated by the presence of our two rookies, who knows. The whole thing seems fishy, it seems like the Hornets are closer to contending than the Suns. Marshall is talented, but he's no Steve Nash, and all those players benefited greatly from him. It'll be interesting to see how Dell plays this one.

Sean
Sean

I'd say the Suns are closer to contending in the next 2-3 years (esp. if they get Gordon), but because of Davis the Hornets are better positioned in the long term (at least 4-5 years out). Remember that Gordon's been on poor teams his whole career so far. The Suns aren't close to contending, but they're closer than the Bees.

Sean
Sean

Josh, I didn't say they're close to contending, I said they're closer than the Hornets.

Josh
Josh

How in the world would the Suns be contending?

Jordy
Jordy

Anyone want Thornton back yet?

John in MO
John in MO

I'm glad Marcus is doing well in Sacto where they play no D, but no, I don't want him back. I'd love to see players who believe in the system. Monty is our biggest asset right now. As Anthony Davis develops, having him surrounded by quality, coachable, high character teammates who work hard is more important than almost anything else (at least in my opinion). So I hope we get good solid team players in exchange for Eric "Waaahh Waaaah Why Don't You Love Me More" Gordon.

Jordy
Jordy

Yea, Thornton's inconsistency killed me. He played defense when the game was on the line, but not all the time. I'd still rather him over all the FA SGs available this year. At least he was humble when he was here.

NO-CHI
NO-CHI

You have got to be kidding me. If I'm Eric Gordon, I realize that if I don't start, it's either because I'm injured, or because I threw a tantrum. Rivers is not going to start unless Jack isn't available. Rivers is an entire different piece from Gordon. Was Joe Dumars constantly worried that Vinnie Johnson would take his starting role? NO. Rivers is meant to fill the Johnson role of coming off the bench, and provide depth. That's what the Hornets meant by drafting Rivers. Gordon is a shooting guard, not a combo guard.

HS
HS

C Gortat PF Davis Ayon Smith SF Aminu SG Rivers Henry PG Jack Marshall Vasquez With the trade to phoenix, is this a playoff team?

rjktan
rjktan

IMO get back PHX picks for the next 2 years which will be in the lottery for sure. Don't take back any crap contracts and go after a RFA/UFA center with the money we free up. Take our licks for the next 2 years and build a contender like OKC have done.

Michael McNamara
Michael McNamara

In the Eastern Conference yes, Western Conference probably not. Hornets would probably add a veteran shooting guard, though, and bring Rivers off the bench.

Cornerstone
Cornerstone

I hope Phoenix really knows what they are wishing for. Gordon has shown himself to be nothing but an immature spoiled little brat that pouts every time a bigger better kid comes anywhere near his toys.

John in MO
John in MO

Seriously, if EG is going to be a punk . . . and he is, then good riddance to bad rubbish. Get what we can and get him out of dodge. I hope the new Bees are full of players that want to be there. The fans deserve that. We don't need another prima donna.

rjktan
rjktan

I love how stupid PHX fans are, they are all drooling over lineups with both EG and AD............ wth???? why would we give them AD and EG.... seriously dumbest bunch of people ever....

Sean
Sean

Huh? What Suns fan thinks they're getting Anthony Davis? I'm not sure where you're reading that. The Suns are as likely to get Magic Johnson as they are Anthony Davis: it's not happening.

rjktan
rjktan

If we can work out a trade to send him to the Bobcats I would do that in a heartbeat. It is clear his agent is doing a good job but in the process it looks like all he wants is money and big dog status. Doesn't actually give a toss about winning. I say S&T and make sure we get the PHX pick for next year as it will be lottery for sure and take whatever other pieces we can get.

rjktan
rjktan

After reading a lot of the quotes from what he has said and how this is all turning out, I say just trade him to whoever and get back what we can. If his ego is bruised cos we took the 2 best rookies we could in the draft to build a future for our team then he can take his 9 games from last year contribution and go away. He is not max worthy anyway and if he thinks 9 games last year justifies paying him max his crazy. PHX are going to be crap for a while and if he thinks it is better there then let him go and get back what we can.

JJ
JJ

I'm neither a fan of the Hornets nor the Suns, but I can't for the life of me understand why Hornets fans are so upset by Gordon's comments. He said his heart is in Phoenix. So? That's not a knock against the Hornets or the fanbase. He didn't insult anyone. That just means he thinks his future is better served in Phoenix. If you guys match, he has to stay regardless so no big deal. He just thinks he has a longer term future in Phoenix because the Hornets just drafted his possible replacement, Austin Rivers.

RockyMountain
RockyMountain

Yea, for what ever reason, some people here really just can't read. This is not the first time. For what ever reason, before the season, some says Gordon doesn't want to be here in NO. And now some are over react. I get homerism. But I don't get crazy illogical over reaction. As if the Hornets is the one and only good one.

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  1. […] That kind of trade could not be further away from what five Hornets247 writers wrote when posed the question of what kind of assets they would seek in a sign-and-trade. […]