The Tracy McGrady Effect : Aaron Gordon
The Orlando Magic announced last week that Hall of Famer, Tracy Mcgrady, would be joining the organization. In a short time, McGrady has already had an impact with forward Aaron Gordon.
Tracy McGrady accepted a role in the Magic organization as a special assistant to CEO Alex Martins. Outside of the prestige he brings to the team, McGrady will have a huge influence on the court. The day after the union was made public, McGrady attended the Orlando Magic practice talking with various players. He spent lots of time with Aaron Gordon giving him tips on how to improve his offense.
Tracy McGrady is speaking with Aaron Gordon after practice today: pic.twitter.com/iUhTeTx3k5
— Josh Robbins (@JoshuaBRobbins) October 6, 2017
Taking the Lead
Tracy McGrady made a name for himself in Orlando after signing in free agency. Like Gordon, McGrady was considered a raw talent with endless potential. He was long, athletic, and at 6’8″ he was a matchup nightmare for defenders. McGrady spent the first three years of his career in Toronto mostly coming off the bench. He showed flashes of brilliance but still deferred to the veterans on the team. When signing with the Orlando Magic, McGrady was to be paired with all-star Grant Hill. Hill never fully recovered from an ankle injury and left McGrady to carry the load for Orlando.
Similar to McGrady, the first three seasons Gordon elected to defer to other players. After three seasons in the league, both McGrady and Gordon realized that they are the best athlete on the team. Mcgrady was averaging 15.4 points in 31.2 minutes per game his third season in Toronto. His first season in Orlando his averages jumped up to 26.8 points and 40.1 minutes per game. Last season Gordon averaged 12.7 points in 28.7 minutes per game. In the last three preseason games, he has averaged 21 points in 26.3 minutes. Although its just preseason that is a pretty big jump in production. Gordon has always been known for his defense, now that his offense has caught up the Magic will be scary.
Gordon has shown he can be the go-to guy for the Orlando Magic. Coach Frank Vogel is steadily increasing the minutes for his starting lineup to get them use to regular season rotations. In Gordon’s last game against the San Antonio Spurs he played 38 minutes and recorded a double-double (27 points, 11 rebounds). Being able to interact with Tracy McGrady consistently and pick his brain has been valuable. McGrady sees the potential in Gordon. John Denton of Orlandomagic.com spoke to Mcgrady and he had this to say.
“I’ve been talking to him and I know his potential,’’ McGrady said of his talks with Gordon. “He’s extremely athletic and has all the athleticism in the world and now he just has to work on the mental aspect of the game. How do we take our physical ability and turn that into the same mental capacity in games? That’s what has to translate for him.
“He has to believe in himself with what he’s doing and let’s see if he can do that,’’ McGrady added. “I think he has all the tools to do that – almost 6-10 and a freakish athlete – but it’s still a growing process for him. It’s a transition he’s going through and for me to be around here and having gone through that, I can help him in so many ways.’’
The addition of Tracy McGrady to the Orlando Magic organization is paying off already. The more time McGrady spends with Aaron Gordon the closer he will be to making a leap in his progression.