When Nene was healthy and in the lineup, the Wizards were a better basketball team as they had a 7-4 record. When the Brazilian center was nursing a foot injury and was on the bench, the Wizards struggled, going 4-7.
After coming over from Denver at the trade deadline, Nene played in those 11 games for the Wizards with 6 starts and averaged 14 points and 8 rebounds. He missed 11 games with the Wizards because of plantar fasciitis in his left foot.
The 6'-11" center showed why he got a huge contract from Denver prior to last season, scoring 22 points and grabbing 10 rebounds in his debut as the Wizards beat New Jersey in mid-March.
After missing 10 games in early April, Nene returned from injury to help the Wizards go on that six-game winning streak to close out the season.
Nene and Wizards point guard John Wall had some solid moments executing the two-man game, including a brilliant pick-and-roll that resulted in Nene getting a great pass from Wall for the game-winning layup at the buzzer over Miami late in the season.
Wall credited the team's late success to the arrival of Nene. Wall pointed to Nene's locker room presence and leadership as a key factor for the team playing inspired basketball the final month of the season when the Wizards reeled off a season high 6-straight wins to close out the season.
Nene will participate in the Olympics this summer for Brazil, so his summer will be busy.
When he does have time to hone his craft, what would coach Randy Wittman want Nene to work on?
Nene has excellent post moves and is a solid defender in the paint, but he certainly can get better at blocking shots to help lead transition the other way. Nene averaged only one block a game last season.
The Wizards hope he can stay healthy because if he does, the Wizards will have a nice one-two punch moving forward with Wall and Nene.