The Dallas Mavericks acquired Christian Wood from the Rockets for four players that were outside their playoff rotation and their 2022 first-round pick. It was a steal for a player that averaged 19.1 points, 9.9 rebounds, and 1.0 block per game in his two seasons in Houston.
Fans thought that would be the Mavericks' answer to their postseason center woes. Dallas lost the rebounding battle 811 to 657 during their run to the Western Conference Finals. They started Dwight Powell at the five but shifted to playing small with Maxi Kleber taking over at center. The Mavs doubled down at center by signing JaVale McGee with their mid-level exception, and head coach Jason Kidd has already named McGee the starter.
The Athletic’s Tim Cato noted (subscription required) that the Mavericks plan on starting Luka Doncic, Dorian Finney-Smith, Reggie Bullock, and Spencer Dinwiddie with McGee. That means Wood will come off the bench, at least to start the season. Should he be in the starting five? How many games will he start? Does it matter?
How many games will Christian Wood start for the Dallas Mavericks? Does it matter?
The Mavs like to begin the game with a rim-rolling center on the floor. Dwight Powell started 89 of the team’s 100 games last season, so he will begin the contest as Luka’s pick and roll partner. JaVale McGee figures to play that role with Christian Wood playing reserve minutes at the four and the five that will likely add up to around 30 minutes per game.
Should Wood come off the bench? Does it matter who starts? Here is a closer look at what to expect from the 6’10 big man in his first season in Dallas.