Houston Rockets: Why Christian Wood should be in the MVP conversation

Christian Wood #35 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)
Christian Wood #35 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images) /
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Houston Rockets
Stephen Silas head coach of the Houston Rockets greets Christian Wood #35 (Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images) /

Houston Rockets: Chrisitan Wood is indispensable

It wasn’t too long ago that the Rockets were riding a six-game winning streak that saw them shoot up the standings but like a pendulum, they’ve swung in the opposite direction. At the center of both of those streaks has been Rockets’ center, Christian Wood.

The Houston Rockets have been two different teams with and without Wood. In the 17 games that he has played this season, the Rockets have averaged 111.2 points per game and allowed only 108.9 points.

When he has been out, the Rockets have scored 108.5 points per game and allowed 110 per contest to their opponents. A team with an average point differential of +2.3, like the Rockets with Wood, would be expected to win 57-percent of their games, while a team with a -1.5 point differential would be expected to win 45-percent of their contests.

It’s easy to see why the Rockets struggle when Wood is out of the lineup, his offensive rating per 100 possessions is 116 and his defensive rating is 104. The Rockets’ offensive and defensive ratings of 109.1 and 106.8 before his ankle injury were in large part owed to Wood and had them looking like a playoff team.

In the ensuing six games since Wood’s injury, all losses, the Rockets were able to drag their offensive and defensive ratings, for the entire season, down to 107.7 on offense and up to 109.5 on defense. The total implosion on both ends of the court further highlights how dependent the Rockets are on Wood.

The Rockets with Christian Wood are a playoff team and without him, they are destined for the lottery. If that doesn’t scream valuable, I’m not sure what does? Well, Christian Wood’s actual stats do.

Next: Christian Wood is keeping MVP company