This has been a season to forget for the Houston Rockets and their faithful.
They are currently 11-27 and hold a claim to the second-to-last playoff spot in the Western Conference. With James Harden’s dramatic departure at the beginning of the season and the myriad of injuries this team has suffered, chances for the Rockets winning anything this season are bleak. I mean, this team is literally on a 17-game losing streak.
However, despite this year’s dysfunction, the Rockets seem to have a sliver of hope wrapped up for their future. Most of that hope is centered around Christian Wood, a man whose absence was a catalyst for the team’s 17-game skid.
For many NBA fans, Wood is a recognizable name. After a stellar campaign in Detroit last season, Woods signed in free agency with Houston and showed why he has the potential to be a long-term building block for the Rockets.
For many casual fans, including Shaquille O’Neal, Wood’s emergence was a bit of a shocker this season. Before going down with a sprained ankle in early February, the versatile big man was averaging 22 points and 10 rebounds per game.
He will likely return to the lineup tonight, providing a much-needed boost to this Rockets squad. I’m not sure it’ll help Houston finally snap its losing streak, but they’ll at least be able to throw more firepower at the Warriors tonight, a team facing some struggles of its own.
The 25-year-old Wood is the only player who solidly factors into the Rockets’ plans for the future. It’ll be fun to see him come back from this injury and continue to grow. If Houston can surround Wood with more young talented players like Kevin Porter Jr. and a talented star like Jalen Suggs or Cade Cunningham in the draft.
Houston has been pretty trash this season, but if they build this team back up right — around Wood — they might be able to bounce back soon.