The suspension of the NBA season due to COVID-19 has brought on several questions surrounding if/when the league can manage to resume play for the rest of the year. Player safety and whether or not fans should be allowed in the stands have been the primary talking points, but an underlying subplot revolves around the injury status of several superstars.
Kevin Durant of the Brooklyn Nets and Klay Thompson of the Golden State Warriors are both coming off severe injuries from the previous season, but could potentially be ready to play if the season resumes and their teams needed them. For Golden State, they aren’t going to make the playoffs, so bringing Thompson back this soon isn’t likely to be an option, but for Brooklyn, the franchise has an incentive to bring Durant back for a playoff run.
Over in Washington D.C., the Wizards are dealing with a similar situation surrounding their $141 million man, John Wall.
The former Kentucky Wildcat hasn’t played in an NBA game since Dec. 2018 due to various injuries that ultimately forced him into surgery. He did not appear in one game during the 2019-20 season before it was suspended and the plan has always been for Wall to sit out until the 2020-21 season starts up.
Wizards head coach Scott Brooks sat down for a telephone interview on 106.7 The Fan and said that Wall is healthy and “looking great”.
“No. Definitely not, but he’s definitely ready next season,” Brooks said about his star point guard on if he would return this season. “He’s looking great. When I saw him last in March, he was terrific. If we were continuing to play and he was going through more practices and continuing to progress and check off all the boxes that we need to be checked, then yeah. But nobody ever anticipated this would happen and we would still have, theoretically, 18 games left and it’s going to be mid-May soon. He will be ready.”
The Wizards currently hold a 24-40 record and are 5.5 games behind the Orlando Magic for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, so rushing Wall back wouldn’t make much sense in regards to making a postseason push. However, if he is healthy and ready to play, what’s the harm in letting him back on the court for short bursts just so he can knock off over a year-and-a-half of in-game rust? Wall recently said he’s going to come back better than he was before; might as well let him loose.