Eric Gordon has spent his offseason rehabbing after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on April 16 – exactly two months ago today. Although he’s not yet back out on the floor, he’s comfortable where he’s at with rehab and strengthening the knee.
“The knee is doing well,” Gordon told VigilantSports.com. “I’ve been running, moving around very well now. There’s no rush but I mean I’m good now.”
The surgery was to his left, healthier knee. It was a cleanup operation, and very minor, he said. The Pelican guard had the same procedure before on his right knee, which has been more troubling to him throughout his career.
“I think overcompensation happened probably to this left knee,” he said, with his left hand rubbing his knee. “It just needed a very minor cleanup. I’m fine now.”
Gordon, 25, was back home in Indianapolis last week for his sixth-annual basketball camp at the JCC, but he’s spent most of the offseason out in Los Angeles. He still has his place from when he played his first three NBA seasons with the Clippers (2008-11). For much of this offseason, Gordon has been training with Rob McClanaghan as part of his rehab, and he said he hasn’t been working out with other players and instead focused on getting his body right.
“I’ll start playing around July,” Gordon said.
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Last season, his third in New Orleans, Gordon played in 64 of a possible 82 games (78 percent), the most since his rookie season – 2008-09 – with the Clippers. They shut him down for the final 14 games because of this knee injury.
Starting in all 64 games that he played, Gordon averaged a career-low 15.4 points, 3.3 assists, and 2.6 rebounds per game. His 3-point percentage, 39.1 percent, was a career-best.
Gordon on his role with the Pelicans: “Well, it’s different,” he said. “What people have to understand with this team, we’re trying to do things like the Spurs system. It’s just weird because we’re such a young team and we need to be used towards our personnel’s ability. Like I said, it’s all about having everyone on the same page and doing what’s right.”
With a solid core of Gordon, Anthony Davis, Jrue Holiday, Ryan Anderson and Tyreke Evans, the Pelicans finished 12th in the challenging Western Conference with a 34-48 record.
“It’s a weird situation for everyone down there,” said Gordon. “We are a young team that’s had a lot of injuries over the past years. We kind of underachieved and we’re looking that opportunity where we can get everybody healthy and everybody back on the same page. I think once we start winning and make the playoffs, all the bad noise that has been talking about us will go away.”
No matter where he is, Gordon keeps in tune with what his hometown Pacers are doing. They jumped out to a 33-7 start, sent two players (Paul George and Roy Hibbert), along with the coaching staff to the All-Star game and finished with the best record in the Eastern Conference. But they started to fade in early February and Gordon observed a change from the outside.
“Great team early on in the season,” he said of the Pacers. “Later on in the season, you could see separation with them. It’s just crazy how all that happened so quickly. I was looking forward to them to probably beating Miami, but then they became a different team later on.”
Gordon has two years left on his four-year max deal worth $58 million. The final year, 2015-16, is a player option.