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John Wall takes another step in rehab, could be practicing by end of week

John Wall takes another step in rehab, could be practicing by end of week

John Wall checked another box in his long recovery back from arthroscopic surgery on his left knee Monday, as the five-time All-Star participated in several parts of the Wizards' practice.

Wall did their pre-practice warmup routine and then ran through five-on-zero drills. Afterwards, Wall went through a shooting routine by himself with assistant coaches.

PODCAST: TOMAS SATORANSKY GOES 1-ON-1

Wall was on the court during the five-on-zero drills going through plays with the first unit including Bradley Beal, Otto Porter and the other starters. He also played alongside Tomas Satoransky at times.

Satoransky is currently his replacement in the starting lineup. Satoransky and Wall played together, switching back between point and shooting guard, and Satoransky also played some at small forward.

There was no defense, no contact and nothing off script. But Wall was out there and by all accounts came out of it fine after 30-35 minutes of work.

"He went hard and looked great," head coach Scott Brooks said. "He was a little winded, but that was expected."

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Wall will continue to do on-court work throughout the week away from his teammates, as with a back-to-back set for Tuesday and Wednesday the Wizards will not practice again until Friday. Wall is on track to potentially practice for the first time on Friday if the next few days go okay.

The next steps for Wall to clear include working his way up to five-on-five scrimmages and getting cleared for contact. After that, he will be ready to return to game action once cleared by the Wizards' medical staff.

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On Monday morning, I detailed the different factors in play for after Wall returns, how he may not have a ton of games to play before the postseason begins. Brooks, however, is not worried about a specific number.

"Whatever he can do, we're all going to live with that," he said.

Brooks went on to describe why Wall is not like other NBA players. There is reason to believe he will need less games to work his way into shape than others would.

"A guy that's dynamic like John, not a lot [of games]. He's unique," Brooks said. "He can play through a lot of things. He can not touch a basketball for five straight weeks and come out and make shots and dribble the ball like he sleeps with it. He just has that type of skillset, that type of talent. A lot of players can't do that."

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Chris Miller wraps up NBA All-Star weekend with Bradley Beal, Michael Lee and Dennis Scott

Chris Miller wraps up NBA All-Star weekend with Bradley Beal, Michael Lee and Dennis Scott

Washington Wizards basketball is almost back. After a wild month for the team capped off by the NBA All-Star game, Bradley Beal and the Wizards get back to action Friday night against the Charlotte Hornets. 

Before the second half of the season starts, get up-to-date on what's been happening around the league in the latest episode of the Wizards Talk podcast. 

Chris Miller sat down with Beal moments after his All-Star Game performance to chat about the weekend, how he probably did travel in their game against the Pistons and his efforts to recruit big name players to D.C..

Then Yahoo Sports' Michael Lee sits down to talk the possible repercussions of Anthony Davis not being traded, the impact of John Wall's Achilles injury and how the Wizards can move forward. 

Finally, NBA TV's Dennis Scott got candid about the Wizards' playoff chances with 24 games left to go and a ton of turnover on their roster. 

"Oh, it's going to be a tough fight," Scott said on their playoff chances. "I would like for them to because when you're trying to retool your team and now Otto [Porter's] gone, you've brought in two young guys. Bobby Portis, oh my goodness. I know you like what you've seen from him so far and hopefully Jabari [Parker's] knees can hold up. That thing still has some [gas] left in the tank.

So, can those young guys give you enough firepower to? Maybe. Maybe."

To hear all of these interviews, click the podcast player above. 

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Dwight Howard reportedly takes another positive step in post-surgery recovery

Dwight Howard reportedly takes another positive step in post-surgery recovery

Dwight Howard is back. Back in town, at least.

According to a report from The Athletic, the Wizards’ center, sidelined since undergoing back surgery on Nov. 30, is expected to start on-court work in Washington.

The original timeline indicated a 2-3 month recovery timeline for Howard, who played in nine games for the Wizards but none since Nov. 18 against Portland. Howard, 33, has primarily rehabbed post-surgery in his native Atlanta.

Washington returns to practice Wednesday following the NBA All-Star break. The Wizards, 24-34, face the Hornets Friday in Charlotte before hosting the Indiana Pacers Saturday.

Needing to jump three teams for a playoff berth in the Eastern Conference, the Wizards could certainly use more help. Whether that help comes from Howard remains to be seen. The report did not indicate if Howard would rejoin the team's full practices or when he would return to the lineup.

Howard missed training camp, preseason and the opening seven games while dealing with back and gluteal pain. The future Hall of Famer only played seven minutes against the Trail Blazers before exiting.

Less than two weeks later Dr. Robert Watkins performed a L4-L5 lumbar microdiscectomy after consultation with the Wizards’ medical staff determined disc herniation was causing severe nerve irritation and gluteal pain.

Washington signed the free agent center to a two-year, $11 million contract in July after trading longtime starter Marcin Gortat in June. The Wizards hoped Howard’s interior presence on both ends of the court would provide the team with needed low-post scoring, rebounding and rim protection.

Though he averaged 12.8 points and 9.2 rebounds, Howard labored athletically. Washington struggled throughout the season on the boards.

His absence created an opportunity for second-year center Thomas Bryant, who has developed into an efficient scorer and energy provider.

The second season on Howard’s contract is a player option, an option he seemed likely to execute without returning to the court this season. For now, the question is how much can he help the Wizards with 24 games remaining.

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