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Wizards notebook: Beal takes a tumble

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Wizards notebook: Beal takes a tumble

Bradley Beal gave everyone a scare at the end of Wizards practice Monday afternoon and it had nothing to do with Halloween rounding the corner.

With the already injured trio of John Wall (knee), Nene (foot) and Kevin Seraphin (calf) watching and not participating in the team's full court scrimmage, a defending Beal tumbled to the ground after an apparent collision, clutching at his leg. All the sounds in the gym, from dribbling basketballs to idle chatter went silent except for the audible noise of the Wizards first round pick in obvious pain.

Down seemingly for an eternity yet in actuality mere seconds, Beal eventually rose to his feet, walked around on his own and then eventually off the court with head athletic trainer Eric Waters.

Following practice Wizards coach Randy Wittman said of Beal: "just kind of tweaked his ankle, just kind of rolled it over." Even for a man who has seen his share of rolled ankles after years spent as both player and coach, Wittman casually acknowledged at least a fleeting case of the you've got to be kidding me's.

"Especially with the injuries we've had...but he got up right away and put weight on it so that's a good sign,” Wittman said.

And with that quote, we have an early entry for understatement of the season. Whew.

Nine-year veteran Brian Cook added a lighter touch.

“He’s 19,” Cook correctly noted. “I’m sure he’s fine.”

* Sticking with the injury front, don't expect Seraphin on the court for Wednesday’s game against Miami. The 6-foot-10 center has missed the last three contests after suffering the calf strain six minutes in against Cleveland on Oct. 13.

Wittman said Seraphin is "making good progress," but offered no specifics on a return.

"That's one of those things that can continue to make great strides in a day or two - then it could be a week, it could be two," Wittman said. "Calf, hamstring, any kind of muscle injury, you just don't know until it runs its course."

Without two of his primary three interior options, Wittman has compensated by moving players from their normal positions, whether its Chris Singleton at power forward or using Trevor Booker for extended minutes inside. For a coach still searching for ideal combinations and learning more about what each player offers, the current scenario is hardly a negative, for now anyway.

"You've got to adjust, you have to play guys. As I said leading into the [Milwaukee] game, 'it's a good thing for me'. It gives me an opportunity to adjust our guys, see what they can and can't do [when] put in this spot, because of injury, sickness, foul trouble. Who can I trust to move into this different spot? So that's been a good thing, for those guys too, to learn a different spot," Wittman said.

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Bradley Beal's agent says guard's not looking for a trade: 'He wants to win'

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Bradley Beal's agent says guard's not looking for a trade: 'He wants to win'

Bradley Beal, his agent Mark Bartlestein told Bleacher Report, would like to stay in Washington - even as he's a hot topic among front offices as the trade deadline approaches.

From Bleacher Report:

His agent, Mark Bartelstein, is not looking for a trade. "Brad wants to win, Bartelstein told B/R. "He wants to win at the highest level, and he wants to compete for championships. I think he's seeing progress, and he's going to do everything he can to lead this team. They got themselves into a huge hole, and he's going to do his best to get them out of it.

The Wizards are facing tough decisions when it comes to the future of the franchise as this season's trade deadline approaches. Beal, as NBC Sports Washington's Ben Standig detailed this week, is among the most tradable assets they have, especially when it comes to their three major contracts. But owner Ted Leonsis took a firm stance against tanking while speaking to reporters in London, and Beal is integral to their playoff hopes with John Wall sidelined. 

This isn't the first time this season that Beal has denied wanting to be anywhere but DC. When drama swirled around the team earlier this season, Beal denied a report that he had requested a trade.

"That's nonsense," he said at the time. "I heard it earlier before the game and I was like, 'If it didn't come from the horse's mouth, it wasn't me.' I got this Washington jersey on and I come here and work everyday, you know, until otherwise. This is where I wanna be."

Earlier this season, it was reported that the Raptors were interested in Beal but couldn't afford what the Wizards were asking for him. According to the latest report on Beal from Bleacher Report, there are a number of teams who may still be interested. 

Again, from Bleacher Report:

There are so many teams in the mix trying to make that extra push that want Beal," a Western Conference executive told B/R.

But even if some fans are clamoring for a big trade at the deadline, the price tag for Beal - who had 26 points in the Wizards' comeback win over the Knicks this week - only seems to be rising. 

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G-Leaguer Jordan McRae who dropped 54 points could be a roster addition for Wizards

G-Leaguer Jordan McRae who dropped 54 points could be a roster addition for Wizards

Time is nearly up for the Washington Wizards to replace Ron Baker on the active roster.

Jordan McRae made his strongest push yet for the gig.

McRae, one of the Wizards’ two-way contract players, scored 54 points for Capital City Friday night in the Go-Go’s 118-107 win over the Main Red Claws. That’s the most points scored by any G-League player this season.

Makes sense this wing guard holds the distinction. McRae leads the league in scoring with 29.5 points per game.

Finding such opportunities with Washington this season has not come as easy. McRae, a 27-year-old with prior NBA experience, scored only four points in 35 minutes over eight games for the 19-26 Wizards this season.

While shuttling back and forth between the two levels since Baker’s release on Jan. 7, the 6-foot-5 guard’s lone appearance came in the final minutes of a 17-point win over Philadelphia on Jan. 9.

For now, McRae and Devin Robinson, Washington’s other two-way contract player, offer in-case-of-emergency depth. Robinson traveled with the Wizards to London for Thursday’s win over the New York Knicks but did not play.

Someone else will join the roster soon.

League rules mandate a minimum of 14 players. Teams have two weeks to reach that number should they drop below. Washington, which kept its 15th slot open all season, did upon releasing Baker.

The Wizards could and likely will fill the void by signing a free agent to a 10-day contract. Another body would not hurt.

John Wall (heel surgery) is out for the season. Uncertain recovery timelines exist for forward Markieff Morris (neck) and center Dwight Howard (back surgery).

McRae is not an option for the 10-day scenario, but he has shown a readiness with the scorching Go-Go. Capital City has won seven of its last eight games.

“He’s done a great job staying with his development on and off the court,” Go-Go coach Jarell Christian said of McRae. “He’s our leader. For him to continue to play the right way, everyone else just falls in line.”

McRae’s scoring surge comes after he sat out last season with a shoulder injury.

“It was the first time in my life being injured. Being out for a whole year, it was tough for me,” McRae said. “Being with these guys every day, going back and forth with the Wizards, it’s tiring, but its fun. It’s my job.”

Christian offered advice on the key for McRae should the Wizards eventually turn McRae’s contract from a two-way to an NBA deal and set him loose on the court.

“I think it’s just about his mentality. When he's thrown into a game on the next level, still being able to function without getting the ball every possession. Being a floor spacer and continue to play defense,” Christian said. “He’s taken initiatives in some games and become the best defender on the team. I think every team wants somebody who wants to take that initiative and become a lockdown defender.”

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