I still haven’t fully internalized the fact that Aaron Gordon scored 41 points in a game this season. When it happened, the flurry of activity around making highlights and writing the primo description meant that I didn’t have time to sit down and think about what actually happened. 41 points. Aaron Gordon. How many threes did he have?
Obviously there is precedent for average scorers having way above-average games. It’s happened plenty of times this season already. But the 40-point threshold remains, to me, a mystical point that only really good players reach or surpass. Never mind the reality.
Aside from that insane game, Gordon hadn’t scored above 20 until tonight. Weird, huh? Normally when players have a random huge performance, they chuck the heck out of the ball the next few games to see if they can do it again. Usually they can’t, but they still end up getting a decent amount of points anyway. Gordon needs to start doing that. He’s scoring efficiently on his middling amount of shots, but he needs to take more. Elfrid Payton’s return should lead to more oops, as we saw tonight, but we also need more jumpers and more skyhooks. Lots more skyhooks.