Beal hasn’t practiced or played in a game since exiting the Wizards’ 94-87 loss to the Charlotte Hornets on Feb. 5. He was originally sidelined with an inflamed right toe, but tests the following week revealed a mild stress reaction in his right fibula. It was Beal’s third injury to his right fibula in his three NBA seasons.
The extended all-star break has limited the number of games Beal has missed to just four and his return appears imminent, though Wittman did not provide a timetable.
“He’s got no pain anywhere and so that’s why they’ve told us he can get back to doing some stuff to see if it reacts,” Wittman said. “That’s the good thing.”
The Wizards could have used Beal in Friday’s nationally televised blowout loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Beal’s absence left Washington’s second unit without Otto Porter Jr., who started in his place. The bench also didn’t have Kevin Seraphin because he had flu-like symptoms, and Ramon Sessions was deemed unprepared to log meaningful minutes after joining the team hours earlier. Wittman refused to apply the excuse.
“We have 15 guys, and I have guys biting about playing time all the time,” Wittman said. “Well, here it is. What are you going to do with it? Show me you deserve to play.”
In other injury news, Wizards starting power forward Nene hobbled off the court in the third quarter Friday. Nene has a history of foot injuries — he’s been dealing with plantar fasciitis all season — but the Wizards said it was just a cramp.
WALL TO START HIS OWN AAU PROGRAM
John Wall took to Twitter on Friday afternoon to announce he will be starting his own AAU program based in his home town of Raleigh, N.C., called Team Wall. The club will launch in the spring.
Kendrick Williams, Wall’s high school and AAU coach, will coach the team and serve as the program director.
The Wizards are scheduled to practice Saturday at 11 a.m. before flying to Detroit for a meeting with the Pistons on Sunday at 3:30 p.m.
Washington claimed the first matchup, 107-103, on Nov. 12, but the Pistons (22-33) are a completely different team now. They have since waived Josh Smith, had Jodie Meeks return from injury, lost Brandon Jennings to a ruptured Achilles’ for the season, acquired Reggie Jackson and traded away D.J. Augustin and Kyle Singler.