When John Wall’s rookie season concluded, trainer Joe Abunassar said he spoke with Wizards officials to get a sense of Wall’s goals for the summer and devised a program to help him regain some the explosiveness that he lacked after suffering a left foot injury, and later a bone bruise in his right knee last November.
Wall decided to take about two months off immediately after the season before heading out to Los Angeles, where he began focusing on getting back to his old ways of leaving skid marks on the hardwood. He has trained with Abunassar, commuting back and forth between the Impact Basketball facilities in Las Vegas and Reseda, Calif., and the results have been evident through his performances in pro-am games across the country. Wall declared himself “back” after scoring 28 points in the Goodman League’s victory over Drew League at Trinity last week, and Abunassar agreed.
“I think that he’s back,” Abunassar said in a telephone interview. He added that Wall had a great season regardless of what ailed him but noticed at times that “something was bothering him.”
Wall has trained with Abunassar since he declared for the NBA draft out of Kentucky and has already agreed to play in his proposed NBA-only summer league in Las Vegas next month, which should give him an opportunity to show off how much he has improved physically against his peers. If you haven’t noticed already, Wall hasn’t been wearing the padding, tights and knee supports that he wore after sustaining the right knee injury.
“I know he battled some injuries, so getting him healthy and his knee feeling great was the first priority and we do different things,” Abunassar said. “Our performance side and what we’re doing with John is really basketball related. Just getting him out on the court and getting back to exploding and getting him to changing his speeds the way that not many people can; using his athleticism when he can go from stop to go so quickly.”
Abunassar said they have focused on helping Wall strengthen different muscles in his lower body that needed improvement and “getting them to fire a little bit quicker. For the most part, he just got into great shape and he’s as fast as ever now.”