NBA: Rockets get bigger with Christian Wood; Heat deeper with Mo Harkless

Field Level Media/Reuters

Posted at Nov 22 2020 01:15 AM

NBA: Rockets get bigger with Christian Wood; Heat deeper with Mo Harkless 1
Pistons forward Christian Wood reacts to a foul in an NBA game on March 4, 2020. Paul Sancya, AP/file

The Houston Rockets are set to acquire free agent Christian Wood in a sign-and-trade deal with the Detroit Pistons, ESPN and the Houston Chronicle reported Friday.

The 6-foot-10 forward-center reportedly would receive a 3-year, $41-million contract, part of the trade that sent Trevor Ariza and the No. 16 pick in the Wednesday draft (University of Washington forward Isaiah Stewart) to Detroit in exchange for a future first-round pick, according to the Chronicle.

Meanwhile, the Miami Heat have agreed to a 1-year, $3.6 million deal with veteran forward Maurice Harkless, according to an ESPN report Saturday morning.

Wood, 25, spent his first 3 1/2 NBA season as a little-used journeyman reserve, playing for the Philadelphia 76ers (2015-16), Charlotte Hornets (2016-17), Milwaukee Bucks (2018-19), New Orleans Pelicans (2018-19) and Detroit (2019-20).

However, after the Pistons traded center Andre Drummond to the Cleveland Cavaliers on Feb. 6 and installed Wood in the starting lineup, Wood responded by averaging 22.8 points and 9.9 rebounds in the remaining 13 games of the season.

He entered 2019-20 averaging 5.3 points and 2.9 rebounds, having started just twice in 51 NBA games.

Wood's career averages are now up to 9.5 points and 4.8 rebounds.

Wood joins a Houston roster that is overshadowed by uncertainty amid whispers that the team's two superstars, guards James Harden and Russell Westbrook, are hoping to move elsewhere.

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Harkless, 27, turned down offers for more money because he wanted to play for a contender, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported. 

The Heat are defending Eastern Conference champions, and Harkless joins a roster that includes Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Kendrick Nunn, Tyler Herro and others.

In 2019-20, Harkless averaged 5.8 points and 3.9 rebounds in 62 games (48 starts) with the Los Angeles Clippers and the New York Knicks. He was shipped to New York on Feb. 6 as part of a 3-team deal that sent Marcus Morris to the Clippers.

In 537 career games (324 starts), Harkless has averaged 7.2 points and 3.7 rebounds. He spent his first three seasons with the Orlando Magic and his next four seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers before splitting last season between the Clippers and Knicks.

Harkless also has appeared in 33 playoff games, starting all but one and averaging 9.1 points and 4.7 boards.