Hornets Could Trade PJ Washington & No. 11 Pick For Christian Wood, 'Bleacher Report' Suggests

Christian Wood screams after a successful play
Gettyimages | Steph Chambers
Basketball

Houston Rockets center Christian Wood is expected to be one of the most intriguing names on the trade market in the 2021 offseason. Though he's currently viewed as a centerpiece in Houston, there's a growing belief around that the league that the Rockets may consider trading Wood this summer.

After finishing the 2020-21 NBA season with one of the worst records in the Western Conference, the Rockets got the No. 2 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft. If they are planning to use that pick to draft Evan Mobley, Dan Favale of Bleacher Report believes that the Rockets are better off trading Wood while his value is at its peak.

Christian Wood To Charlotte Hornets

Christian Wood taking a shot from the perimeter
Gettyimages | Carmen Mandato

Once he becomes available on the trading block, several teams are expected to express a strong interest in adding Wood to their roster in the 2021 offseason. One of his potential suitors on the trade market is the Charlotte Hornets. With Bismack Biyombo and Cody Zeller set to become unrestricted free agents after the season, the Hornets are expected to be aggressive in finding a new starting center this summer.

Wood would be an ideal trade target for the Hornets. Aside from his impressive performance on both ends of the floor, he also perfectly fits the timeline of the Hornets' core of LaMelo Ball, Terry Rozier, Cody Martin, and Malik Beasley.

Proposed Trade To Acquire Christian Wood

PJ Washington taking a free throw
Gettyimages | Sarah Stier

As of now, the Rockets aren't actively trading Wood. However, they are highly likely to explore the possibility of moving if they are presented with an offer that could help them speed up their rebuilding plans. According to Favale, the Hornets could acquire Wood from the Rockets by sending them a trade package that includes PJ Washington and the No. 11 pick in the 2021 NBA Draft.

"P.J. Washington is very much plug-and-play on offense, and he showed the capacity to take on heavy reps this season as a small-ball 5. Houston could play him both with and independent of Mobley. Getting the No. 11 pick as well is huge. It's also potentially superfluous."

Christian Wood's On-Court Impact On Hornets

Swapping Washington for Wood would make a lot of sense for the Hornets, especially if they are serious about ending their playoff drought in the 2021-22 NBA season. Compared to Washington, Wood has more experience and he has proven this season that he's capable of matching up against dominant big men in the league.

His potential arrival in Charlotte is expected to significantly improve their performance on both ends of the floor. He would give them a very reliable scoring option under the basket, a great rebounder, rim protector, and floor-spacer. This season, he averaged 21.0 points, 9.6 rebounds, and 1.2 blocks while shooting 51.4 percent from the field and 37.4 percent from beyond the arc, per ESPN.

Does The Proposed Trade Make Sense For Christian Wood?

Wood would definitely love the idea of leaving the Rockets for the Hornets. Wood didn't sign a three-year, $41 million contract with the Rockets to be part of a rebuilding team but to win an NBA title alongside James Harden and Russell Westbrook.

With both star guards gone, staying with the Rockets no longer makes any sense for Wood. Though they aren't a legitimate title contender right now, joining a team with title aspirations like the Hornets would be better for Wood than wasting the years of his prime in Space City.