Scott Brooks never went to medical school, but in his second season coaching the Washington Wizards he has grown familiar with giving physical rehabilitation updates. On Friday — and for possibly the next seven weeks — Brooks fielded questions on point guard John Wall’s recovery from an arthroscopic debridement procedure, a minor surgery he had on his left knee Jan. 31.
“Just the normal rehab,” Brooks responded when asked about Wall’s recovery process. “I’m not a doctor. I know our guys are good and he’s diligent in his rehab and he’s been in here every day. He’s on crutches, I’m assuming, for another week. Maybe a little longer.”
Although on Thursday night ahead of the Wizards’ game against the Boston Celtics, Wall was able to stand on his own at center court while the team presented him and Bradley Beal with all-star jerseys. He still needed the assistance of crutches for walking to and from the locker room.
While on crutches, Wall’s first week of recovery appears to be limited, according to Brooks. Wall can work on an AlterG antigravity treadmill — the physical therapy tool which reduces impact of walking and running. Wall has often used the machine in the past while recovering from lower body injuries, including when he received platelet-rich plasma and viscosupplementation in his left knee in November.
Thus far, the Wizards’ regular rotational players have missed 33 games due to injuries, with the most coming from starters, such as Wall (18), Markieff Morris (seven) and Otto Porter Jr. (four). A year ago, the Wizards finished in the top 10 among teams with the fewest total games lost to injury, according to the sports injury website InStreetClothes.com. So Brooks, a full-time basketball coach, can be forgiven for sharing limited facts about Wall’s therapy.
“Other than that, the normal rehab stuff,” Brooks said in conclusion, “that a lot of smart people work on.”
Beal appears to accept blame for loss to Boston
After a night of self-examination, it seems as though Beal woke up Friday morning ready to take the heat for the Wizards’ 110-104 overtime loss to the Celtics.
Around 10 a.m., a tweet sent from Beal’s account read: “I put that one on my shoulders! I gotta do better! #NoExcuses.”
Beal could have been addressing his 20 missed shots, which included the final one in regulation.
In a tie game, Brooks entrusted the ball to Beal. The plan: take the last shot within the final 9.8 seconds without giving the ball back to Boston. Although Porter had made a go-ahead basket this season — a 22-foot jump shot with 25 seconds to play against the Minnesota Timberwolves on Nov. 28 — and had a stronger shooting night (9 of 18 from the field for a team-best 27 points), Brooks wanted Beal in isolation.
However, Beal ended up taking a tough fadeaway near the baseline. The shot missed badly and the game went into overtime when Washington shot 2 of 12 from the floor. Beal finished with 7-of-27 shooting for 18 points.
“I did not necessarily like the last shot. I liked the play coach drew up but they ended up having help side come over,” Beal said on Thursday night. “I lost my footing a little bit. I got bumped a little bit but I still should have come with a better shot at the end of regulation.”
On Friday afternoon, Brooks described Beal’s shot without regret, but as a luckless situation.
“We wanted that matchup and we got the matchup,” Brooks said. “Unfortunately, Brad got knocked off balance and didn’t get off a good look.”
As far as giving Porter those crunchtime shots, Brooks said: “It’s depending on the situation. Last second with the score tied, you just don’t want to give them a chance with the shot. … We’d like to have gotten a better shot. But also, I like Brad making those decisions. Like I said, he got knocked off balance. It’s unfortunate [for] that time of the game but he did. We got to live with those shots. At least I do and our team does.”
Morris sits out practice with injury
Morris did not practice Friday after playing nearly 30 minutes the night before with an injured right hand.
“It’s pretty swollen,” Brooks said. “It’s bothered him the last couple of games.”
Ahead of the Boston game on Thursday morning, Morris told reporters that he hurt his hand while tangling with Philadelphia center Joel Embiid during Tuesday’s game.
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