Hachimura cleared from protocol, Beal practices


Wizards head coach Wes Unseld Jr. shared two pieces of good news after Sunday's practice, that Rui Hachimura has been cleared from health and safety protocol and that Bradley Beal participated after leaving Friday's loss to the Knicks with a right knee contusion.

Beal didn't play 5-on-5, but with three days until their regular season opener against the Toronto Raptors, it could be a sign he will be available.

"He looked fine. I think he just knocked knees, a little bit of discomfort," Unseld Jr. said. "He was not a full participant today. He stayed away from the live stuff, but he did on-script, up and down, he was moving well, he was shooting. I don’t think it is anything significant. We’re just being cautious right now. I don’t see any lingering effects."

Hachimura arrived in Washington this past week after spending training camp and the preseason away from the team due to personal reasons. He had to go through Covid-19 protocol before he could begin practicing, but him taking that step appears to be imminent.

Hachimura will be brought along slowly, beginning by practicing with Wizards coaches and then working his way up from there. He is not expected to be available for the start of the season, given that timeline.


"He’s out of protocol at this point and able to do individual workouts. We’re transitioning him into that phase," Unseld Jr. said.

It may take some time for them to get Hachimura up to speed, depending on his level of conditioning upon arrival. He may miss several games to open the year.

But the Wizards are looking forward to having him back in the building to start that process.

"I’m really excited, man. I miss that guy. I’m excited to have him back in the facility, I’m excited to play with him, I’m excited to be in the locker room with him,' Corey Kispert, Hachimura's college teammate, said.

"The fact that he’s ready to go and that he’s going to join us again soon is awesome. I can’t wait to have him back. He’s only going to help what we’re doing moving forward."

Hachimura is the Wizards' projected starter at power forward and is entering an important season for his career. The Wizards are exercising his fourth-year contract option, NBC Sports Washington was told, which means he will be eligible for an extension next summer.