Rui Hachimura took another step toward returning to the lineup Monday as the Wizards assigned him (and Davis Bertans) to the Capital City Go-Go so they could participate in practice. Hachimura didn’t do any live portion of practice and the drills were non-contact, but it was a step in the right direction for a return to game action.
“Rui didn’t do any of the contact stuff,” coach Wes Unseld Jr. said before Monday’s game against the Hornets. “Davis was out there in the scrimmage and looked really good. Moving well. It was a good sign to see him get up and down and be competitive.”
Hachimura hasn’t practiced or played with the team this season due to personal reasons. He arrived in D.C. in early October and has only done individual workouts thus far.
Now the Wizards will slowly ramp up his workload until he’s ready to practice with the team fully. “To continue on this path, doing more and more of practice day to day until we’re able to implement, get him into some one-on-ones, two-on-twos, three-on-threes,” Unseld said. “All that’s return to play protocol. It’s not unique to him. Deni had to go through the same process. Davis has done so as well. We’re just trying to get him up to speed.”
There is not, however, a set date for any future Hachimura deadlines. “I think we’ll know when we see it, just kind of progress day by day and read that progression,” Unseld said. “Try to add a little bit more as we go. I don’t necessarily have a week-to-week calendar that earmarks a certain date.”
Hachimura averaged 13.8 points and 5.5 rebounds a year ago in his second year in the NBA.
The Wizards will head on the road after Monday’s game against the Hornets and will play the Pelicans, Thunder, Mavericks and Spurs before returning to D.C. on Dec. 1. Unseld answered “we’ll see,” on whether or not Hachimura would join the team on the trip.