Nene will make his home debut on Saturday against the Charlotte Bobcats as the Wizards attempt to snap a season-opening 10-game losing streak and avenge their most lopsided loss of the season.
Making his first appearance of the season on Wednesday in Atlanta, Nene scored 12 points during the Wizards’ heartbreaking 101-100 loss to the Hawks. Coach Randy Wittman said he would continue to keep the 6-foot-11 Brazilian big man limited to no more than 20 minutes.
Nene complained of soreness after not playing competitive basketball in more than three months, but when asked if was confident that Nene would be around consistently for the rest of the season, Wittman said, “I have no reason to believe otherwise, right now.”
Wittman reminded his team of their humiliating 92-76 loss in Charlotte on Nov. 13, hoping that it would lead to an inspired effort. But that game, which the Bobcats led by 22 in the second half, was an aberration on two fronts: The Bobcats have won their other five games by six points or fewer and it was the Wizards’ only loss by more than 10 points this season.
“That’s fresh on our minds, knowing how we have to come out and play against this group,” Wittman said. “I’m looking forward to seeing how we bounce back after our first game against Charlotte.”
Wittman will stick with the same starting lineup from the previous game in Atlanta – Shaun Livingston, Bradley Beal, Jordan Crawford, Jan Vesely and Kevin Seraphin.
Trevor Booker remains out with a strained right knee. Wittman also could not give an estimate for John Wall’s return from a stress injury in his left knee. The Wizards announced on Sept. 28 that Wall would need an eight-week recovery. Eight weeks have come and gone but Wittman said Wall has yet to practice with the team.
“If I could give you a time, I would,” Wittman said.
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Tipoff: 7 p.m.
TV: Comcast SportsNet
Radio: 106.7 (WJFK FM)
Once the contest starts, check out a live box score for the game here.