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When will Markieff Morris return to Wizards? Plus, John Wall on the All-Star Game

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When will Markieff Morris return to Wizards? Plus, John Wall on the All-Star Game

Here are the highlights from Wednesday's Wizards practice...

Morris still not with the team

One day after he and his brother were acquitted of assault charges in an Arizona courtroom, Markieff Morris was not with the Wizards as they practiced at Capital One Arena. The Wizards expect Morris to make his return to the team some time this week, as early as Thursday. The Wizards play their second preseason game on Friday night at home against the New York Knicks.

Morris won't be participating in that game anyways due to his recovery from sports hernia surgery. He is expected to miss several weeks of the regular season, which begins on Oct. 18. Still, the Wizards want to get him back as soon as possible.

"It's great, that's my guy," John Wall said of Morris' acquittal. "I talked to him afterwards. I told him congratulations to him and his brother. Now, get his butt back to D.C. I'm glad it's over and he can focus on basketball and try to get healthy and be back with the team."

Head coach Scott Brooks left Morris a voicemail, but hadn't heard back from the power forward as of Wednesday afternoon. Brooks expects Morris to spend some time with his family first before arriving in Washington. Morris' first child was born just weeks before the trial.

Brooks said the Wizards linked Morris up with a group of specialists in Phoenix to help aid his recovery. They hope to have him with the Wizards' medical staff and around his teammates soon.

"It's always important for him to be around with all of our guys. That's the tough thing about injuries, you feel left out," Brooks said. "He's quiet, but he has a voice with our guys. he has that calming influence and that toughness. When he speaks, players listen."

The Wizards have been exploring their options to replace Morris in the lineup while he's out through training camp and now one preseason game. It will come down to Jason Smith, Mike Scott or Chris McCullough, but the plans could center around Otto Porter playing some power forward in small-ball lineups. Brooks said the process remains ongoing.

Wall reacts to new All-Star Game format

The NBA's announcement of a new All-Star Game format could affect Wall very directly, as Wall has been an All-Star in each of the past four seasons. No longer will the East play the West. Now captains will pick teams playground style.

Wall didn't have much to say when asked for his reaction to the news, but does think it will be good for the league.

"Trying something new I think will be exciting for the fans to see. It's great. It's like when the lockout was happening, people were going to different charity games and playing. It could turn out to be something like that and be a lot of fun," he said.

And like most basketball fans, he's all for the drama that could come out from captains picking teams.

"You could have players that are captains and might not like players on other teams, so they won't pick them," he said with a smile.

Wall is big in China

After the Wizards beat the Guangzhou Long-Lions in their preseason game on Monday, several members of the Long-Lions showed up in the Wizards' locker room afterwards. They all wanted to meet Wall. 

"Just about every player came to the locker room," Wall said. "They took pictures and some of them got some autographs. It was just like their shoot around shirts and shirts they had on. Stuff like that."

Though Wall didn't play in the game, clearly the Long-Lions players were excited to see him.

Injury updates

Tim Frazier didn't practice due to his groin strain and may not practice on Thursday. Devin Robinson remains out with a stress fracture in his left foot. Both he and Frazier were limited to light shooting work. 

Sheldon Mac remains sidelined with a jammed left thumb. Brooks described Mac as "much better" one day later and said he could be cleared for contact on Thursday. Unfortunately for Mac, there is competition at his position now with veterans Carrick Felix and Donald Sloan in house. Mac had a strong game on Monday, but certainly wants to get back as soon as possible.

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NBA 2K18 leaks new jerseys for many teams including the Wizards

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USA Today Sports

NBA 2K18 leaks new jerseys for many teams including the Wizards

NBA fans got a glimpse at unreleased alternate jerseys from a host of teams on Thursday thanks to a leak by the video game NBA 2K18 and the Wizards are included in that mix.

NBA 2K happens to do this periodically and often the jerseys are exactly right or close to official. It happened earlier this season with other teams, notably the Timberwolves who went through a color and logo change.

Here's a look at the one leaked for the Wizards, one that falls in line with the 'City Edition' alternate that has yet to be released officially.

Keep in mind this is not official, but here you go:

<<<CLICK HERE FOR ALL THE NBA 2K18 JERSEY LEAKS>>>

(Photo via @itscorevisuals, h/t @BulletsForever)

This recent round of leaks revealed jerseys for many teams including the Jazz, Magic and Lakers. See them here:

<<<CLICK HERE FOR ALL THE NBA 2K18 JERSEY LEAKS>>>

 

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Tomas Satoransky continues to play at backup point guard for Wizards even with John Wall back

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USA Today Sports

Tomas Satoransky continues to play at backup point guard for Wizards even with John Wall back

John Wall's return wasn't the only piece of point guard-related news for the Wizards on Wednesday night.

In their 93-87 win over the Memphis Grizzlies, it was Tomas Satoransky and not Tim Frazier who first emerged from the bench to spell Wall with 5:10 on the clock. Satoransky ended up with 15 minutes in the game compared to five for Frazier.

Before Wall had platelet-rich plasma (PRP) treatment and viscosupplementation injections in his left knee, Satoransky had appeared in only nine of the Wizards' 18 games. Frazier played in all of them and averaged 16.6 minutes. 

Wall's absence opened the door for Satoransky to play as the primary backup behind Frazier and he thrived. In nine games, Satoransky averaged 8.4 points, 4.4 assists and 3.4 rebounds. He shot 52.9 percent from the field and 46.7 percent from three.

[RELATED: WALL SHOWS WIZARDS EXACTLY WHAT THEY WERE MISSING]

He was +44 and, most importantly, he committed just two total turnovers while averaging 23.1 minutes per game. Satoransky is second in the NBA in assist-to-turnover ratio (6.00) among players who have appeared in at least 10 games.

Satoransky, 26, has long been appreciated by Wizards fans for his potential, ever since he was selected in the second round of the 2012 draft. He's 6-foot-7 and can jump out of the gym. Now he's shown the ability to play smart and limit mistakes and it appears to have earned him a larger role, even with Wall back.

"I felt good about it," Satoransky said of his nine-game audition. "I was the first guy coming off the bench. I didn't play very well today, but it's good to have the recognition of those games we had."

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As Satoransky noted, he didn't have his best game against Memphis. He had three points, two rebounds, two assists and a turnover. He was also 1-for-3 from the free throw line, as the Wizards shot 12-for-24 as a team.

The backend of head coach Scott Brooks' rotation can be hard to predict, as sometimes a given night will depend on matchups. Players like Mike Scott, Jason Smith and others have gone missing and sometimes after stretches where it appeared they played well.

One game doesn't guarantee that Satoransky has a new official role and that this will continue. But it was certainly a good sign for the second-year guard, a sign that he earned some trust from the coaching staff while Wall was out.

"Hopefully I can keep pushing," he said.

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