Wizards

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The difference in tone with Scott Brooks in charge is felt already by the Wizards in a literal sense. There are no practices Wednesday or Thursday, after beating the Cleveland Cavaliers in a road exhibition on Tuesday night in Columbus, Ohio.

This is an about-face of what John Wall and Bradley Beal had become accustomed to under then-coach Randy Wittman, who would've called at least one practice before Friday's preseason finale at home against the Toronto Raptors (CSN, 7 ET). 

Brooks talked openly about his philosophy on resting players, reducing practice time and using more of the analytic tools to help manage them on non-game days. 

Wednesday was more of a treatment day for the Wizards, while they're completely off Thursday, though some players may opt to go to Verizon Center for individual work on their own. 

Brooks has carefully managed the minutes of his veterans, particularly Marcin Gortat, in the preseason. 

The Wizards were one of the NBA's most injured teams last season and stayed injured throughout a 41-41 finish that ended out of the postseason picture.

They fired their head trainer early in the offseason and revamped the medical staff and philosophy, which is more in sync with Brooks' view on how to manage an 82-game season.

 

Wall is coming off May surgeries to both knees, and Beal is trying to avoid a stress reaction in his lower right leg for the fifth year in a row. Markieff Morris has had a sore left foot and missed two preseason games, and Ian Mahinmi is out because of left knee surgery. Otto Porter (ribs) and Jason Smith (oblique) haven't played in the last two exhibitions.

When president Ernie Grunfeld quickly determined that Brooks was the right man for the job, it had to do with more than Xs and Os. This is one example. 

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