Is Gordon the Savior?

How badly do the Rockets miss Eric Gordon?

Jonathan Daniel

How badly do the Rockets miss Eric Gordon?

Eric Gordon's last game played was against the New Orleans Pelicans. He suffered a knee injury that has him sidelined for 4-6 weeks. Recently, it shows that the Rockets need him late in game situations.

In the last three games, the Rockets have struggled in the 4th quarter. Teams are starting double James Harden late in games. Harden's dominance has caused for multiple double teams this season.

Russell Westbrook is having good season by shooting 41.4% from the field. As seen, Westbrook has no problem getting to the rim, shooting from underneath the arc, or finishing on fast breaks. He has struggled shooting the ball from three this season. Westbrook is now shooting 23% from three. This is something Westbrook has told the press after his divesting playoff lost against the Portland trailblazers. Late In 4th quarters, Westbrook has missed game tying open threes. That was seen against the Los Angeles Clippers and Dallas Mavericks. Westbrook has never been shy of the moment before but now questions circulate. Has he taken too much of a back seat to Harden?

Gordon has struggled shooting the ball from the field before his knee injury. He is at a season low averaging 10.9 ppg. Gordon is also shooting the ball at 30.9% from the field. He has never shot the ball this poorly in his career. Since his tenure with the Rockets, Gordon has been reliable. His most reliable moments are in the 4th quarter. All last season, Gordon made major shots in the 4th quarter. In the last three quarters of last season, Gordon was averaging 18.4ppg, shooting the ball at 40.9% from the field, and shooting 36.9% at the three point line. In order for Gordon to help the Rockets, he has to overcome his struggles.

This season has been struggle for Gordon but it can be turned around. Gordon has to live up to expectations since he signed that big contract this past summer. The Rockets do need him back because these double teams on Harden will not stop.

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Houston gets the lopsided win

Valdez, Astros dominate the Angels in 10-0 rout in Anaheim

Framber Valdez was dominant against the Angels on Monday night. Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images

With a series win at home over the weekend, the Astros started their final regular-season road trip on Monday, squaring off against the Angels in Anaheim. They held the momentum firmly in their favor all night, dominating both sides of the game to start the series with a victory.

Final Score: Astros 10, Angels 0

Astros' Record: 89-61, first in the AL West

Winning Pitcher: Framber Valdez (11-5)

Losing Pitcher: Jaime Barria (2-4)

Siri leads off with a bang

With Jose Altuve being given the night off, Houston gave Jose Siri a shot at the leadoff spot, and he delivered to start the opener in Anaheim. He launched a missile to left field, 426 feet, to put the Astros in front 1-0 before the Angels could record an out. Later that same inning, they strung together three singles, the third being an RBI by Carlos Correa to double the lead.

Valdez goes seven shutout innings

That gave Framber Valdez a lead to work with as he stepped on the rubber in the bottom of the inning, and he didn't give it up as he would post a dominant start. He started with a 1-2-3 first, worked around a couple of singles in the second, then used a double play to face the minimum in the third.

He retired Los Angeles in order again in the fourth, stranded a two-out single in the fifth and a single and a walk in the sixth. He had his worst inning of the night in the seventh, giving up a leadoff single then loading the bases on back-to-back two-out walks. He'd escape the jam, though, keeping the shutout alive and finalizing his impressive line: 7.0 IP, 6 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 6 K, 98 P.

Astros take the opener in lopsided fashion

Houston tacked on an insurance run in the top of the eighth, getting a one-out double by Correa to set up an RBI single by Marwin Gonzalez, pushing the lead to 3-0. Things escalated from there, as another single put two on base for Martin Maldonado, who blew the game open with a three-run homer to make it a six-run lead.

Brooks Raley took over for Valdez in the bottom of the inning, and with a 1-2-3 inning, made it his eighth appearance in a row without allowing a run. The Astros didn't let up in the top of the ninth, getting two hits and a walk to load the bases before a grand slam by Gonzalez made it 10-0 and gave him 5 RBI in a two-inning span. Seth Martinez, called up by the Astros earlier in the day, made his big-league debut in the bottom of the ninth and closed out the lopsided win to put Houston's magic number at 6.

Up Next: The second of this four-game set will be another 8:38 PM Central start on Tuesday. Jose Urquidy (7-3, 3.38 ERA) will take the mound for the Astros, going opposite Packy Naughton (0-2, 4.32 ERA) for the Angels.

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