Christian Wood reveals how Andre Drummond inspired his breakout season

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Steve Dykes-USA TODAY Sports

Houston Rockets forward Christian Wood revealed that Cleveland Cavaliers big man Andre Drummond helped him have a breakout season during the 2019-20 campaign.

Wood, who reportedly signed a three-year, $41 million contract with Houston this offseason, was teammates with Drummond on the Detroit Pistons.

After Drummond was traded to Cleveland, he texted Wood a message that inspired him to continue his improved play, according to The Ringer’s Yaron Weitzman.

“But Wood was now a different person,” Weitzman wrote. “A better player, too. His shooting had improved. He was stronger. Not only did he beat out [Joe] Johnson, but he then passed Thon Maker on the Pistons’ depth chart. When Blake Griffin got injured and the team traded Andre Drummond to Cleveland, Wood found himself thrust into the starting lineup. (Wood said that after the deal, Drummond texted him a picture of a man passing a torch.) He responded with an All-Star-caliber stretch, averaging 22.8 points and 9.9 rebounds per game.”

Wood had a great season, as he finished the 2019-20 campaign, averaging 13.1 points and 6.3 rebounds per game.

Both averages were career-highs for Wood, who is now looking to establish himself in Houston.

As for Drummond, he is heading into his first full season in Cleveland. The Cavs certainly hope he can grow the confidence of their young core as he did for Wood last year.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.