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Eric Gordon Has Benefited from Increased Early Role

© Zachary BonDurant-USA TODAY Sports

After a very rough opening two games to his Phoenix Suns career, Eric Gordon has solidified himself as the No. 2 option on the team without Devin Booker and Bradley Beal.

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The 34-year-old Gordon started coming off the bench for Phoenix in the season opener with Booker on the floor.

Since, he has started all but the one game Booker did come back for and absolutely thrived for the Suns.

Gordon began shooting 10-of-32 (31.3%) from the floor and only had one assist in the first two games, but was very patient in waiting for the game to come to him. It paid off and Suns’ fans have seen an even better version of the veteran guard than expected.

In the five games since, Gordon has averaged 16.4 points per game on a terrific 34-of-62 (54.8%) clip and also embraced a playmaking role, averaging 4.4 assists in these games. For a season, Gordon has not averaged this high of assists since his third year in the league in 2010-11 with the Clippers when he averaged this exact number.

Gordon had his best game yet in the Suns’ 120-106 victory over the Pistons yesterday, recording 21 points, eight assists, five boards and only one turnover. He also had the highest plus/minus of the game at +23.

Even though it’s unfortunate that Beal and Booker are out, it has been a blessing in disguise to get Gordon rolling in their absence.

Some of the role players have had a hard time adjusting to not playing with the full Big 3, but the veteran guard is one of the few who have relished the opportunity.

We knew Gordon could score, but this playmaking role he has developed even without the two stars is what is really scary for when he comes off the bench. Gordon has also scored on all three levels so far, which is a welcome sight for Suns fans and not what opponents want to see from what was thought to only be a shooter.

With Beal and Booker reported to be back healthy soon., teams will hardly see any offensive drop-off when the two stars are subbed off because of Gordon. If he continues this level of play, Gordon could be the best fourth option in the league and easy frontrunner for Sixth Man of the Year.

Gordon will be a key to how far the team goes this season because of his offensive prowess.

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Brendan Mau is a senior writer covering the Phoenix Suns and more for Burn City Sports. You can follow him on X via @Brendan_Mau

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