After years of delaying the inevitable, the San Antonio Spurs are now in the thick of a rebuild. While the team currently sits several games below .500, the results have been encouraging so far. San Antonio's roster is younger and more exciting than in recent seasons and features a number of talented players.
Still, the roster is a work in progress, and while the Spurs are brimming with young talent, not every player on the team will be a part of the future. Additionally, with the team likely to be in the lottery, there will be another skilled young prospect thrown into the mix next season.
Therefore, San Antonio will eventually need to consolidate their talent and focus on building around its core group of young players. Previously, I wrote about the Spurs potentially pursuing DeAndre Ayton, but another talented big man could be available, Christian Wood.
While Ayton is likely better than Wood, Jakob Poeltl's emergence as a top 10 center in the NBA has negated some of the need for Ayton. Wood, on the other hand, would fill a position of need as the team's new starting power forward. With all this in mind, let's take a look at potential trades for Wood.
Why Christian Wood could be available
After going undrafted in 2015, Wood took some time to develop into the highly productive player that he's become. He bounced around the league, playing for five teams in his first four seasons. However, it wasn't until he signed a three-year $41 million deal with Houston that he began to live up to his full potential.
As a member of the Rockets, Wood has averaged a terrific 20.3 points, 10.1 rebounds, 1.1 blocks, and has shot 37.4% on five attempts from threes over a total of 52 games. Still, despite those numbers, the Rockets have struggled mightily with him as their best player.
Wood is only 26 and possibly still improving, though he is considerably older than each of the Rockets' three first-round selections from this year's draft, including number two overall pick Jalen Green. That alone doesn’t necessarily mean that Houston is looking to trade him now, though there may be other reasons.
For instance, Wood is in year two of an extremely cheap contract and will likely want a significant raise, either via an extension or when he hits free agency. While that's reasonable, it's something Houston may be unlikely to do, considering he doesn't fit their rebuilding timeline.
Additionally, they currently have the worst record in the NBA and by moving him this season, they could drastically increase their chances of landing another top-3 pick in the 2022 NBA Draft.
Wood also recently expressed his disappointment with not being involved enough in the Rockets' offense, then attempted a season-low five shots as if to send a message the following game.
All this is to suggest that Wood could be available for the right price. So what would a deal for the Rockets' big man look like?