Aaron Gordon (AG) of the Denver Nuggets is having a career year. He is having the most efficient season of his career. AG is also still taking on the challenge of being Denver’s most valuable defender. With that in mind, many are calling for Aaron Gordon to make his first All-Star appearance of his career. It is somewhat strange to think that Nikola Jokic’s first teammate to make an All-Star Game will be someone other than Michael Porter Jr. or Jamal Murray, but it is becoming a real possibility this year with how well Aaron Gordon has been playing. He will most likely not be an All-Star starter, but a reserve spot is not out of the question.
As alluded to already, AG is having by far the most efficient season of his career. Gordon is averaging a career-best in many categories. He is currently averaging 61.2 shooting from the floor. He is also averaging a three-point shooting percentage of 38.9 percent, another career-high. On top of that, AG is also averaging a player efficiency rating of 21.4 and a true shooting percentage of 67.4 percent, both career- bests as well.
Some other notable numbers include a defensive rebounding percentage of 16.3 percent, a usage rate of 20.7 percent, and an offensive box/plus minus of +3.1. As if the advanced numbers are not enough, Aaron Gordon is also putting up respectable points and rebounding averages. As of December 20th , he is tallying 17.0 points and 6.4 total rebounds per game. While Gordon may not be quite as valuable as Jamal Murray or Michael Porter to the Nuggets, he has been the unquestioned second-best player on the team. At least for this season.
AG’s Unexpected Role
Anyone who pays close attention to the Nuggets knows that Gordon is the defensive stalwart in Denver’s frontcourt. He is the one tasked with guarding the better wings and power forwards of the NBA. A role that Jerami Grant used to fill for this Denver Nuggets squad. Now, they have found their answer with the athletic Aaron Gordon in terms of guarding the LeBron’s, KD’s, and Kawhi’s of the league. We have even seen some highlight blocked shots from the former Arizona Wildcat.
However, playing with the back-to-back MVP in Nikola Jokic has brought out the best in him on the offensive end of the floor. Not only is he a great cutter who thrives off Jokic-fed passes. But, he is also starting to hit the occasional jump-shot when he is left wide-open. Despite injuries to Murray and Porter, AG’s increased production has lifted the Nuggets to the second seed in the West. They now have a legitimate shot to claim the top spot. Even if and when Murray returns to form and Porter comes back, Gordon will continue to be an All-Star worthy player with how efficient he has been this year. AG will continue to play his role at a high level. In turn, it could potentially net him an All-Star spot.