The Detroit Pistons gave Christian Wood a chance and now the two may continue their story with a new deal. Nothing is imminent but there’s mutual interest.
Fans may consider the 2019-20 Detroit Pistons season as lost but don’t tell Christian Wood that. This season is a storybook that features a million-dollar smile, and it could increase in value.
Wood’s contract became guaranteed for the rest of the season on Friday and he couldn’t hold in his excitement, and added that they may get re-signed in Detroit.
“I just want to play basketball. For the first time, I’m hooping, I’m happy. I got a chance with a good coach, a good front office that likes me. I’m just happy to be here,” Wood told the Detroit Free Press.
He received a phone call from senior advisor Ed Stefanski and from the sounds of it, the young prospect may have a bright future – in Detroit.
“Before it came, I talked to Ed Stefanski and he said they’re happy to have me,” Wood said. “He told me he was going to try and re-sign me for next year, but we’ll see how it goes.”
The Pistons (14-26) are slipping further away from a playoff spot and their roster is in limbo moving forward. They have $51 million in guaranteed cap space during the offseason before player and team options get involved. They’ll have plenty of room to sign him and add to their roster in a rebuild.
Amidst trade rumors, that number is sure to change. Andre Drummond has been as active a name as anybody but teams are also interested in Langston Galloway and Luke Kennard. There’s reason to believe Derrick Rose and Markieff Morris could also draw interest as the Feb. 6 deadline nears.
Moving forward with whatever transpires over the next four weeks, it’s likely the Pistons core of younger players will see more time on the court. That’ll be important development for players such as Sekou Doumbouya, Louis King, Wood and others.
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Wood’s story is just beginning. He suited up for four teams over three seasons, which included a gap year for the 2017-18 season. It’s been different with the Pistons, who have needed him with Blake Griffin and Morris missing time.
He’s played in 36 of 40 games and has capitalized on his playing time. Wood is averaging 9.5 points and 5.2 rebounds per game. He is an average 3-point shooter, which draws defenders out and he has the ball-handling skills to capitalize by attacking the closeout. He has a 65.7% true shooting percentage as a result of shooting splits of .578/.357/.700.
The 24-year-old has turned into a nice asset for Detroit. The fact that the Pistons brass sees him as a player keeping around may shed some insight into what the roster could look like moving forward. A more mobile frontcourt that can play on the perimeter is something that Dwane Casey seems to value.
Wood’s storybook career hasn’t closed yet, hopefully won’t for quite some time and remains in the Motor City.