Rashard Lewis has not played since the all-star break and Wizards Coach Randy Wittman wasn’t sure when he would be able to return after Lewis experienced complications in his left knee while working out with the team in Memphis.
Lewis suffered a bone bruise in his left kneecap on Feb. 22 after grabbing a rebound in a loss against Sacramento. He had a second pain-relief shot on Friday and Atlanta in was hoping that it would help him get back on the court, but now he will have to wait as the Wizards try to move on with new acquisitions Nene and Brian Cook.
“I know he had a little bit of setback. I know he worked pretty hard,” Wittman said of Lewis. “He worked three-on-three before the game and had some soreness that wasn’t there. He had stepped it up. Things were headed pretty good, but after that workout, there was some soreness. We’re going to have to just play that how it is. Now we’ve backed him off what he’s doing to try to calm that down.”
Lewis, a 14-year-veteran, has missed already missed 16 games this season and is averaging just 7.8 points on 38.5 percent shooting and 3.9 rebounds in easily his least productive campaign since he was a rookie. He had trouble with tendinitis in his right knee after arriving from Orlando in December 2010, in exchange for Gilbert Arenas, and experienced soreness in the same leg this season.
The Wizards expect to have Lewis around the team for practices for games, but just like Andray Blatche, he won’t travel with the team on road games as he heals. Lewis is the second-highest-paid player in the NBA behind Kobe Bryant and is slated to earn $22 million next season. But the Wizards can buy him out after this season for $13.7 million, according to a league source with knowledge of the situation.
Arenas has since moved on from Orlando, receiving the remaining $63 million of his contract through the amnesty provision in the latest collective bargaining agreement. And on Tuesday, he signed a contract with the Memphis Grizzlies for the remainder of the season.
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