An Interactive Sports Experience

Lesser-Known Hardwood Heroes: Gustavo Ayon

Lesser-Known Hardwood Heroes: Gustavo Ayon

Jul 29, 2013

People who watch basketball know that in order to find a player’s true worth, one must look beyond numbers, statistics, and scouting reports. On the surface, every player can be judged by how many points they scored or how many rebounds they pulled in; but sometimes this can mislead us into believing an important player is of little worth. The most drastic case of this in the NBA is Atlanta Hawks center Gustavo Ayon.

Gustavo is a Mexican-born 6 foot 10 center. This upcoming season will be his 3rd in the NBA, though he’s already 28 years of age. Though his numbers won’t exactly jump off the sports page, they might impress those looking in the right places. Over his career he’s only scored 4.8 PPG and averaged 4.3 RPG, but he’s done so off the bench with fewer minutes. He’s also managed to be an efficient scorer, shooting .542% FG.

The Hawks didn’t waste much time scooping up Ayon off waivers, so it’s apparent that teams are looking past the numbers when making decisions. This is good news for Gustavo, as he’s been deceptively important to his team recently. In the 2012 playoffs, the Milwaukee Bucks played the defending champion Miami Heat. The Heat were expected to win, and they did, but Gustavo gave them a serious run for their money. Though Ayon faced an injury, he fought for victory with the minutes he was given on the court. His hustle and determination sometimes tilted momentum in the Bucks favor, and though it was short-lived, it was recognized by other NBA teams as something they would like in a player.

At the end of his career, Gustavo Ayon may disappear into the shadows as just another forgettable role player; but if you can look past the numbers, his role was anything but forgettable.

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