RICHMOND, Va. -- While John Wall initially didn't sound optimistic about his chances of participating fully at training camp or being ready for the preseason when he had his knee surgeries, the start of Wizards' training camp Tuesday suggested otherwise.
Coach Scott Brooks had to stop practice and tell Wall, who'd done most of the drills up to that point, to sit down. He wasn't going to be allowed to do 4-on-4 or 5-on-5 drills.
"That’s a sign of dedication from him. You can see how hard he’s working," backcourt mate Bradley Beal said. "When we went live it took coach bringing in and single-handedly kicking John out of the practice in order to get him out of the drills."
Wall, who had procedures on both knees May 5 to clean up loose particles (right) and a shave down a bone spur (left), surprised all of his teammates because of his readiness.
“I feel great," Wall said. "A little fatigued. .. I think I’ll do the same exact stuff (tomorrow that) I did today."
The sight boosted an already energetic first day under Brooks in his first season in Washington.
“John is going to be back. I have a very good feeling about that," said second-year forward Kelly Oubre after the first session of two-a-days. "He didn’t play 5-on-5 or 4-on-4 live but he was doing everything else. He looked great. He looked quick. He was jumping. He was dunking.”
Brooks estimated that Wall did 70 percent of the drills at Siegel Center on the campus of Virginia Commonwealth University. Those included defensive drills, full-court drills, contact layups, shell drills and working on dummy offense. Wall went for more than an hour.
“I think he looked good. I heard a lot that he was not going to be ready for training camp," center Marcin Gortat said. "For me he looks normal. He looks completely normal. ... He looked completely fine. He’s still talking trash.
"We’re talking about a freak of nature. He’s just built like that. His genes are obviously incredible."