Wizards' John Wall says he isn't sure if he'll return next season
By Howard Fendrich
Apr 09, 2019 | 11:40 PM
John Wall would not be bothered if the Washington Wizards pick a point guard in the first round of the NBA draft.
“You have to do what's best for the team and make sure that we have pieces,” Wall told reporters Tuesday night at halftime of Washington's regular-season finale, then added with a smile: “And when I come back, he can be a great backup to me.”
Wall is not entirely sure whether he will be able to play at all next season as he recovers from a torn left Achilles tendon that was operated on in February.
“I have no idea just yet. That's my goal. That's my mindset, where I'm pushing toward,” he said. “But whenever the doctors clear me and get to that point, then I will know.”
Wall appeared in only 32 games this season, averaging 20.7 points and 8.7 assists, before having surgery on his left heel in January. Then he ruptured his tendon in a fall at home, requiring an additional procedure.
“I think it was finally at the point when it was weaker and it was going to give out,” Wall said, “so I'm glad it gave out then instead of me being four months ahead in rehabbing.”
With Wall and center Dwight Howard missing much of the season, and plenty of on-court problems with defense and other aspects, the Wizards went 32-50, their most losses since 2012-13. Bradley Beal became the first player in Wizards franchise history to average at least 25 points, five rebounds and five assists, while appearing in all 82 games for the second consecutive season, and Washington picked up its 50th loss Tuesday night, 116-110 to the playoff-bound Boston Celtics, in a finale that was meaningless to both clubs.
A five-time All-Star, Wall has dealt with a series of health issues in recent years, including having surgery on both of his knees.
He was wearing a gray walking boot on his left foot and lower leg Tuesday.
“John will be back,” Wizards coach Scott Brooks said after his team's 116-110 loss to the Boston Celtics. “He has a lot of work to do and he's going to have some tough days. We're all going to need to wrap our arms around him and make sure he can get through this.”
Wall said he will rehab his Achilles in Miami during the offseason.
“It's my job to get myself back to where I think I can be. No matter what any surgeon does, if I don't attack rehab the right way or make sure I'm in the best shape, the right state of mind, it doesn't matter,” he said. “Any time you come back from injury, if you're going to be out there playing basketball and keep constantly thinking about it every time you're out there, you're never going to be the same.”