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John Wall outlines what the Wizards need to add this offseason, says Rui Hachimura is a building block

John Wall outlines what the Wizards need to add this offseason, says Rui Hachimura is a building block

Every year, usually at Wizards locker room cleanout day at the end of their season, John Wall is asked the same question and every year he gives an honest and thought-provoking answer. The question is what the Wizards need to add in the offseason to improve their team.

This year, he was asked the question by Matt Barnes on Showtime's 'All the Smoke.' And once again, Wall gave a detailed response.

"With me and Brad [Beal], who is a great cornerstone, and you have Rui [Hachimura] who is a rookie that's in there, but I feel like we definitely need a three that's a dog, that can knock down shots and compete and create for us. And then, we've also gotta build a bench, just being realistic," Wall said.

First of all, Wall clearly sees Hachimura as a building block. For him to include Hachimura in that sentence along with Beal and himself says a lot about what Hachimura has shown already during his nascent NBA career. And Wall has certainly taken notice despite not actually playing with him and observing from the bench as he recovers from his Achilles injury.

Secondly, what Wall said about the small forward spot is not all that surprising. Though the Wizards have some young guys with potential like Troy Brown Jr. and Isaac Bonga at the three, no one has done enough to warrant any guarantees about their future. 

Brown is atop that list as a recent first-round pick and has potential to be a creator on offense, as Wall says they need. But he has a developing jump shot and is still finding his way defensively, if that's what Wall means by a "dog." 

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Wall went into further depth on the bench to explain his reasoning.

"I love the team we have now. We have some great pieces. There are a lot of young guys getting an opportuntity to play that would probably not have gotten on other teams. But I feel like if you want to be one of those teams, you've gotta have veteran guys around that are willing to understand their role. That's kind of what we dealt with in years past with our teams is nobody really understood their role," Wall said.

He added that in years past the Wizards had too many players on one-year contracts and that it hurt the chemistry and cohesion of the team. And perhaps most interesting was a sort of big-picture request from the Wizards. It sounds like he would prefer some win-now moves this summer.

"I felt like for a couple of years in the past, we just tried to kind of rebuild through the draft like you do in a lot of other sports. But in the league, your window is kind of short. You don't have time for that," he said.

Wall seems to believe what the Wizards need will not be found in this year's draft. Whether that means he thinks they should trade their first-round pick or not is unclear.

The Wizards would be able to check off those boxes in a wing player if they lucked out in the lottery and could pick Anthony Edwards of Georgia. Maybe Isaac Okoro of Auburn would help out similarly, though to a lesser extent.

Otherwise, the Wizards would need to explore trades or options in free agency. Jerami Grant and Jae Crowder might be the best of the realistic options set to hit the open market.

Granted, Wall didn't say how the Wizards should find the players he thinks they need. He just said what they need. It's up to the front office to determine whether they agree and then go from there.

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With Zion Williamson next, a look at NBA phenoms' first games against the Wizards

With Zion Williamson next, a look at NBA phenoms' first games against the Wizards

The Wizards are expected to get their first look at No. 1 overall pick Zion Williamson on Friday night as they battle the New Orleans Pelicans at 8 p.m. on NBC Sports Washington. This should be their first glimpse of the phenom in any type of game, though they were supposed to see him last summer in Las Vegas, if you recall. Williamson hurt his knee in a previous Summer League game that was famously cancelled due to an earthquake.

There was anticipation then and there is plenty of it now, as Williamson has since become a sensation in the NBA. Though he has only played in 23 games, he has already done some extraordinary things. Williamson is averaging 22.4 points and 6.2 rebounds in just 27.9 minutes.

Against the Kings on Thursday night, Williams had 24 points on 12 shots in 21 minutes. His efficiency is not the type of stuff you see often, especially for a rookie.

And those are just the numbers. Anyone who has watched him play can attest to the unusual athletic gifts that he has.

"Explosive. Just dynamic," Wizards head coach Scott Brooks said. "His athleticism is off the charts. His second jump is as good as everybody's first jump. He's a quick jumper. He's going to be a problem. He's going to be a problem for a lot of years. It's impressive what he's done in the limited minutes that he's played here."

RELATED: BRYANT'S GAME VS. EMBIID IMPORTANT LONG TERM

Williamson may be one of a kind with his strength, first step and leaping ability, but he's just the latest in a long line of star prospects to reach the NBA level. As he gets set to face the Wizards, here is a look at how some other rookie phenoms have fared in their first games against the franchise...

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Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (MIL) - Nov. 9, 1969

24 points, 16 rebounds, 4 assists, 10-22 FG, 48 minutes; Bullets won by 11

Larry Bird (BOS) - Oct. 19, 1979

12 points, 9 rebounds, 4 assists, 2 blocks, 6-14 FG, 22 minutes; Celtics won by 37

Magic Johnson (LAL) - Jan. 9, 1980

14 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, block, steal, 4-6 FG, 26 minutes; Bullets won by 2

Michael Jordan (CHI) - Oct. 26, 1984 (NBA debut)

16 points, 7 assists, 6 rebounds, 4 blocks, 2 steals, 5-16 FG, 40 minutes; Bulls won by 16

Shaquille O'Neal (ORL) - Nov. 7, 1992 

22 points, 15 rebounds, 4 blocks, 8-16 FG, 40 minutes; Magic won by 5

Allen Iverson (PHI) - March 4, 1997

18 points, 13 assists, 8 rebounds, 2 steals, 7-20 FG, 45 minutes; Bullets won by 1

Tim Duncan (SAS) - Nov. 26, 1997

18 points, 14 rebounds, 5 blocks, 5 turnovers, 9-15 FG, 41 minutes; Wizards won by 4

LeBron James (CLE) - Nov. 8, 2003

17 points, 9 assists, 8 rebounds, steal, block, 8-19 FG, 44 minutes; Cavs won by 13

Kevin Durant (SEA) - Jan. 6, 2008

19 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, 7-12 FG, 35 minutes; Wizards won by 22

Derrick Rose (CHI) - Dec. 6, 2008

15 points, 8 assists, 2 steals, 6-12 FG, 37 minutes; Bulls won by 7

Blake Griffin (LAC) - March 12, 2011

26 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 blocks, 8-17 FG, 30 minutes; Clippers won by 21

Luka Doncic (DAL) - Nov. 6, 2018

23 points, 7 rebounds, 3 assists, steal, 9-16 FG, 33 minutes; Mavericks won by 19

Ja Morant (MEM) - Dec. 14, 2019

18 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds, 3 steals, block, 5-11 FG, 28 minutes; Grizzlies won by 17

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76ers' Ben Simmons diagnosed with partial dislocation of the left kneecap

76ers' Ben Simmons diagnosed with partial dislocation of the left kneecap

After exiting the 76ers-Wizards matchup early Wednesday night, Ben Simmons was diagnosed with subluxation of the left patella on Thursday.

Simmons left the game during the third quarter and did not return. The injury occurred after he grabbed an offensive rebound and dribbled to the corner to pass to Al Horford in the post. Following the play, he began flexing his left leg and left for the locker room. Simmons was seen walking gingerly in street clothes minutes later.  

Before leaving the game, Simmons recorded eight points, six rebounds, four assists and two steals in 23 minutes.

Simmons’ diagnosis of a partially dislocated kneecap leaves him out indefinitely as he and the team consider treatment options. He has already been ruled out of Philadelphia’s game against the Orlando Magic on Friday. However, his MRI showed no ligament damage in the knee, which leaves him optimistic to return later in the playoffs.

His knee injury is not the only injury Simmons has had to overcome this season. He also missed the final eight games before the NBA’s hiatus with a nerve impingement in his lower back, but fully recovered before the restart began.

Playing without an All-Star player will be a challenge for Philadelphia, but the team has proven successful thus far in Orlando. The Sixers have gone 2-1 in the bubble and currently trail the Indiana Pacers by one game for the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference and are two games behind the Miami Heat for fourth. 

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