John Wall faces a lengthy road to recovery but is working to stay positive.
Point guard hangs with the Wizards as he awaits surgery on ruptured Achilles’ and lengthy rehab
A scooter didn’t stop John Wall from having a little fun with his teammates Friday night as the Washington Wizards milled around a contented locker room following their 119-106 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Wall leaned over the handlebars of the scooter he is using for mobility to try to swat a postgame meal out of Jordan McRae’s hands before grabbing McRae’s phone and pretending to take a call. He deadpanned as he relayed his halftime message that new teammate Bobby Portis would be “a punk” if he didn’t turn his 18 points at halftime into 30 by game’s end (which Portis did). He praised Bradley Beal’s leadership in the wake of the news that Wall is expected to be out for 11 to 15 months, potentially missing the entire 2019-20 season, after rupturing his left Achilles’ tendon.
In all, Wall is in good spirits as he prepares for surgery, which is scheduled for 7:30 a.m. Tuesday.
“Chilling,” Wall said. “Minor setback for an extra couple months, so nothing to dwell on.”
Wall, 28, adopted a positive outlook as he spoke to reporters for the first time since announcing his latest injury, which ensures that the point guard will have missed at least half of each of the past three seasons.
“You never want to hear it, but it is what it is, and [I’m] kind of glad that it happened now instead of when I’m four or five months ahead in recovery and I’m trying to get back to being on the court. ... It’s not like I’ve started my process of getting back, so it’s not too much to kind of dwell on,” he said.
“I guess God is telling me something: ‘ Sit down and get yourself fully healthy.’ I’ve played through injuries my whole career. I know a lot of people who’ve played through injuries and don’t sit down; that’s one thing I don’t like to do. If something is nagging or not broken, I want to play. And I guess it kind of caught up to me. Something I can’t control, but my love for the game is still there, and I’ll come back and conquer this like it was just a little step in the road.”
Wall, who watched the Wizards’ win from the bench Friday night, praised the franchise’s new players — in addition to Portis’s 30 points, new forward Jabari Parker was one assist and three points from a triple-double — and expressed his well wishes for Otto Porter Jr. and Markieff Morris, who were traded Wednesday.
“I’m definitely sad to see that with those guys coming in and contributing, doing everything they can for this organization and laying it on the line with playing through injuries,” Wall said.
“We added some great pieces; you see how well those guys played today. The franchise made some changes the last couple days, made some adjustments, and I think these guys that we added have a great mind-set even though it was only one game. Just take it one step at a time. For me, all I can do is sit back and watch film . . . [so] that I can come back and be able to play injury-free and just have fun without playing through nicks and bruises every night.”
“I guess God is telling me something,” John Wall said. He is expected to be sidelined 11 to 15 months.