Film Room: Aaron Gordon on Defense

By Josh Cohen
Sept. 10, 2015

Aaron Gordon’s versatility is what makes him such an intriguing young player. In the play featured below, Gordon ends up guarding three different players who all have different skillsets. He starts off chasing Thabo Sefolosha around screens, picks up Pero Antic after an inadvertent pass and swipes Dennis Schroder on his drive to the basket. WATCH:

Power forwards have trouble driving on Gordon, who has extremely quick feet and lateral instincts. Gordon is very mobile and can slide over to help when a man is open in the paint. He also can come up with super impressive defensive stops like in the play featured below. WATCH:

Gordon has about a 7-foot wingspan, which makes him a legitimate shot-blocking threat. He uses his arms extremely well. They are always active and moving. He does an excellent job interfering with opponent’s shot attempts. In the play featured below, Markieff Morris seals off Gordon in the post. However, with Channing Frye’s help, Gordon traps Morris and deflects his pass attempt from behind. WATCH:

Gordon makes up ground in a hurry. He is extremely athletic and his leaping ability is off the charts. In the play featured below, the Pacers look like they are about to score in transition. However, Gordon races down the floor and rejects Rodney Stuckey’s dunk attempt. WATCH:

Gordon does an excellent job contesting perimeter jumpers. He gets around screens well and makes it difficult for opponents to take open shots. Opponents defended by Gordon shot 41.5 percent from the field (over three percent worse than their season averages). In the play featured below, Gordon gets around multiple screens and forces Jimmer Fredette into a tough jumper. WATCH: