John Wall, the Washington Wizards’ catalyst at point guard, will miss up to eight weeks with a stress fracture in his knee, a severe blow to a mediocre team looking to make some headway in the league
Surgery is not required, according to a statement released by the Wizards, but Wall will immediately begin rehabilitation.
“My teammates and I are all excited to build on the improvement we made at the end of last season, and I know they will continue to make great progress while I get through this setback,” Wall said in a statement. “I will work extremely hard to make sure I get back as soon as possible so I can re-join them and help our team continue to improve.”
After experiencing discomfort in his left knee, which coach Randy Wittman initially thought was bursitis, Wall visited orthopedic specialist David Altchek in New York on and underwent an MRI that revealed the early stages of a non-traumatic stress injury.
Training camp is set to begin on Tuesday and the Wizards will also be without big man Nene as he recovers from plantar fasciitis in his left foot. Wall’s injury leaves the Wizards with A.J. Price and Shelvin Mack as the only other point guards on the roster. The Wizards will open the season on Oct. 30 in Cleveland, but Wall isn’t expected to return until close to December.
“We’re all disappointed for John after how hard he worked this summer and how excited he was to begin training camp, but we feel fortunate that we caught the injury early and that he will be able to return with the vast majority of the season still in front of us,” team president Ernie Grunfeld said in a statement. “In the meantime, we’re confident that the versatility and depth of our team will help us move forward and continue the positive momentum that we’ve seen over the past several months.”
The doctor visit also kept Wall from attending a dinner in Washington on Thursday for the inaugural Nell and John Wooden Coach of the Year Leadership Award. John Calipari, Wall’s former coach at Kentucky, received the honor. Wall also had a community relations event at Simon Elementary in Southeast pushed back another day until Friday, when he led a program on being active with young kids.
Wall has averaged 16.3 points, 8.2 assists and 4.6 rebounds since the Wizards selected him No. 1 overall in 2010. Before news of his injury was revealed on Friday, Wall discussed the work he put in this offseason, working with famed trainer Rob McClanaghan, and explained how he wants to make the playoffs this season.
“I think the pieces we have is great, but I think for us to take that next step, it’s going to be keyed on me,” Wall said. “Your third year is a key year. It makes or breaks you, what you’re going to be in the this league. This is a big year for me.”