Houston Rockets: How long will Christian Wood be out?

Christian Wood #35 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images)
Christian Wood #35 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Justin Ford/Getty Images) /

Christian Wood has been the biggest prize of the 2020 free agent class, as the Houston Rockets big man has been a natural fit in new Rockets coach Stephen Silas’ offense. Wood has embarked on a quest to make the All-Star team for the first time in his career, as he didn’t hold back when asked to share his thoughts on his candidacy by fellow Space City Scoop writer Zachary Allen.

“I do,” Wood told Allen. “I believe I’ve been playing at a high level. I believe I’m one of the best bigs in the West. I think I deserve a vote.”

Heading into Thursday night’s contest against the Memphis Grizzlies, Wood held averages of 22.3 points, 10.4 rebounds, 1.6 blocks, and 1.3 assists, while making 55.3 percent of his shots and 39.7 percent of his 3-pointers. But a scary moment occurred in the third quarter of the Rockets’ contest against Memphis, as Wood suffered an ankle injury that was stomach-turning to watch.

Wood had to be helped off the court by his teammates and had to be taken back to the locker room in a wheelchair. The injury marks the second such injury on the same ankle in just 15 days for Wood, as he first injured the ankle when the Rockets faced the Phoenix Suns on January 20th, which caused him to miss the Rockets’ next three games.

How long will Christian Wood be out for the Houston Rockets?

On Thursday night, fellow Rockets fan and sports medicine physical therapist Okeezie (@OkeezieSportsPT on Twitter) gave a timetable of how long Wood’s injury could keep him out of action.

“Best case scenario looks like two weeks. Two to four weeks, from the look of it. Definitely a re-aggravation. But stepping on a foot like that would be pretty bad regardless. Two to four weeks is pretty normal. Might be closer to the four than two, because it’s a second injury.

Ankle sprains heal pretty well, as long as you stop re-injuring them. The more sprains you have the longer it lingers. He just had bad luck today. He stepped on a foot but it wasn’t landing from a jump, which makes it worse.”

Okeezie added that he’ll officially know more once Wood’s MRI results come back on Friday, and that he wouldn’t be surprised if Wood attempts to come back early. If so, Okeezie provided suggestions of how Wood can prevent from re-injuring the ankle.

“High tops, ankle tape, and an ankle brace need to be on if he comes back early.”

Almost immediately after the game concluded, ESPN’s Tim MacMahon reported that the Rockets were concerned that Wood could miss significant time, which adds more credence to Okeezie’s prediction that Wood could likely be on the longer end of the estimated return timeframe.

Okeezie previously provided a comprehensive description of John Wall‘s injury from earlier in the year which caused him to miss five consecutive games, stating that Wall had been issued a workload that was heavier than his body could handle, after being out of action for more than two years.

Okeezie stated that Wall’s minutes needed to be trimmed down to the 28-32 minute range, and Wall has yet to play more than 29 minutes in the five games since returning. The Houston Rockets will now need to find a way to replace Wood’s productivity, which could be done by signing a free agent and/or giving an increased workload to rookie Jae’Sean Tate, who has played well this season and had 19 points, seven rebounds, and two blocks, while going 7-of-9 from the floor and 2-of-3 from long-range.

Hopefully Wood’s injury won’t cause him to miss too much time and he’ll be able to make a full recovery.

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