At last season’s trade deadline, after agreeing to send Clint Capela to Atlanta, the Rockets pursued a deal for Christian Wood, offering the Pistons a pair of second-round picks and Isaiah Hartenstein in exchange for the big man, according to James L. Edwards III and Kelly Iko of The Athletic. Detroit rebuffed that offer and showed interest in re-signing Wood during the 2020 offseason.
The Pistons’ interest was reciprocated by Wood, and the team made him a contract offer, per Edwards and Iko. However, Detroit was pursuing free agents like Jerami Grant and Mason Plumlee and wasn’t in position to use cap room on Wood as well.
Without dipping into their cap space, the Pistons had the ability to use Wood’s Early Bird rights to offer him a contract that started at $10.05MM, and – according to The Athletic’s duo – they didn’t go over that amount. That meant they were outbid when the Rockets presented Wood with a three-year offer that started at $13MM+.
Here’s more on Wood, along with a couple more Eastern Conference notes:
- With Wood’s Rockets set to face Detroit on Friday, Pistons head coach Dwane Casey said he’s proud to see the big man enjoying success in Houston, as Omari Sankofa II of The Detroit Free Press writes. “We tried to get him here, we just didn’t have enough in the bucket,” Casey said. “He’s a special kid and I think good things for him and wish him well, except for (Friday) night.” Wood has been ruled out for the game due to a sprained right ankle.
- Nets star Kevin Durant, who played 50 minutes in Wednesday’s double-overtime loss to Cleveland, will be held out of Friday’s rematch due to injury management, per the team (Twitter link). Friday’s game is the first half of a back-to-back set, so Durant should be available on Saturday vs. Miami.
- After having missed most of the season with a hand fracture he suffered on opening night, Hornets center Cody Zeller is listed as probable for Friday’s game vs. Chicago and is expected to be available. Rick Bonnell of The Charlotte Observer examines what sort of impact Zeller can have on a Hornets team in need of frontcourt depth.