Wizards Hit With Early Injury News

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HANG TIME NEW JERSEY – Mid-September is the time when basketballs start bouncing at a more frequent rate in NBA gyms around the country, a sound that brings hope and joy to all involved. But when players get back to playing full-speed basketball, they also get back to getting injured.

For the second straight season, the Washington Wizards got a head-start in the injury race. Last September, they announced that John Wall would miss two months with a stress fracture in his left knee. This September’s news isn’t as bad, but it could certainly affect Washington’s outlook.

Early Wednesday afternoon, the Wizards announced that Chris Singleton has a Jones fracture in his left foot and will be out 6-8 weeks. An hour later, they announced that Emeka Okafor has been diagnosed with a herniated disc in his neck and will be out indefinitely.

The Singleton injury is tough, but he could be back for the start of the season and the Wizards have depth at the forward positions. The Okafor injury is obviously a lot more worrisome.

Washington is a team that promised to improve this season and possibly snatch a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Last season, they were 22-19 in games where both Wall and Nene were healthy, had a top-10 defense, and had a starting lineup that was excellent in limited minutes. Only four lineups that played at least 100 minutes had a better NetRtg (point differential per 100 possessions) than the unit of Wall, Bradley Beal, Martell Webster, Nene and Okafor.

So the hope was that Washington could maintain its top-10 standing on defense while improving its offense with the development of Wall and Beal. But the defensive part of that equation looks a little more doubtful with the Okafor news. He was a big part of that top-10 defense, anchoring the middle for more than 2,000 minutes last season.

Kevin Seraphin can step out an hit a mid-range jumper, but his shooting numbers were barely better than Okafor’s last season. And Seraphin is obviously not the defender that Okafor is. So the Wizards will have to help that Okafor isn’t out too long.

4 Comments

  1. J says:

    damn it!!! next it will be the Timberwolves again >:(

  2. 2014OKC says:

    Wiards need all hands on deck to even make last seed. The East just got so much more competetive over the summer…

    Heat
    Indiana
    Brooklyn
    Chicago (iffy-depends on Rose here)
    New York
    Cleveland (iffy depends on Bynum and Irving’s health)
    Detroit
    Atlanta or Wizards (iffy if Wizards have injuries)

  3. Akeem Asante says:

    Unfortunate “perhaps”. A healthy Wizards makes the playoffs. However, if they don’t, and can get lucky in the lottery, they will be all the better in the not so distant future. Not making the playoffs could hurt Atlanta’s, or Boston’s chances of getting lucky in the lottery. If these two teams rebuild well, the lower half of the eastern playoff teams gets interesting, with Detroit and the aforementioned Wizards getting more competitive.

    Miami New York Brooklyn Washington Chicago Detroit Indiana Cleveland, Boston, Atlanta

    On Wed, Sep 18, 2013 at 3:38 PM, Hang Time Blog | NBA.com wrote:

    > ** > John Schuhmann posted: ” [nba-video > vid=games/wizards/2013/04/10/0021201165-mia-was-play2.nba] a HANG TIME NEW > JERSEY — Mid-September is the time when basketballs start bouncing at a > more frequent rate in NBA gyms around the country, a sound that brings hope > and”