“Me and Christian [Wood] actually went out to eat that night and he was fine, he was good,” McRae told NBC Sports Washington’s Chris Miller on the latest episode of the Wizards Talk podcast. “We had practice the next day, he was fine. Then before the [Sixers] game, he was like ‘Yo, I don’t really feel good, I might not play.’ We all gave him a hard time like, ‘Yo, we have Joel Embiid tonight and now you out sick? You don’t want to play.'”
On this early March afternoon, he was participating in a routine one-on-one drill. The ball had swung around the perimeter and eventually would go to the ball-handler at the top of the key, who was allowed up to three dribbles to make a move. The defender — in this case, a sacrificial lamb named Garrison Mathews — would scurry inside the 3-point line, fundamentally closing out and hoping to deter a basket. “Hoping” is the operative word here. It was Wall’s turn to go. He received a pass and put the ball on the ground. One dribble, two steps and liftoff. He threw down a lefty slam glorious enough that its release today should quench any fans’ thirst for the sports world’s first new highlight in weeks.
Rehab assignments after long-term injuries occur all the time in baseball. We’ve seen it grow more common in the NBA. Stephen Curry, for example, practiced with the Warriors’ G League affiliate in early March. Wall might be the most extreme case. He spent weeks running with the Go-Go before the season paused. “That has become such an important priority for us. How can we impact John’s rehab? We’re here for him and that’s our job,” Richman said. “Our job is to be in service of the Wizards and take care of our players and develop them.”
Storyline: John Wall Injury

John Will will not play this season no matter what

Despite the late-season break, don’t count on Wall to appear on the court during the 2019-20 campaign. The original plan the team and Wall had set remains unchanged: He will stay on the sideline during his 10th NBA season in an effort to fully recover from a left Achilles’ tendon injury suffered in January 2019. “We’ve said all along that we can’t wait until John plays next season, and I think that will still be our attitude and our stance,” Wizards General Manager Tommy Sheppard said in a recent interview. “We’re very anxious to see John Wall in uniform next year. I don’t think any of this changes that.”