Washington Bullets guard Frank Johnson, who has spent the entire season on the injured list, has been given approval by the team to resume practicing with the squad. He may be activated for next week's trip to Dallas and San Antonio.
Johnson initially injured the fourth metatarsal bone in his left foot last Feb. 7 in the closing moments of a game against the Detroit Pistons.
Johnson returned in time to play in the last game of the season, a loss to the Philadelphia 76ers in the first round of last season's NBA playoffs. In the summer, however, Johnson reinjured the foot during rehabilitation.
Johnson once again underwent surgery and has been sidelined since, although he has been able to participate in shooting drills and light running. The guard has wanted to do more, but the Bullets' management stressed a more cautious approach, not wishing to risk a situation similar to that of New York Knicks center Bill Cartwright. Cartwright has broken the same bone in his left foot three times in the last year.
An examination Thursday apparently ruled out that risk, and Johnson's first full-scale workout will come today.
"That's going to have a lot to do with what happens next," said Johnson before last night's game. "I'm really excited, though."
Shue said, "There's a good chance we'll activate him. I'll have to see how he looks and works out, and then we'll sit down and have a talk with him about it."