It's unrealistic to think the Wizards can be better without John Wall than they are with him given all the different things he does to help them win. He's their primary ball-handler, second-leading scorer and leads in the Eastern Conference in assists per game. Wall even leads the Wizards in blocks despite being a point guard and often the shortest player in their lineup. But as they proved on Saturday night against the Hawks, the Wizards have enough talent to stay afloat and sometimes even thrive when he's off the floor. They still have an All-Star in Bradley Beal, two guys on max contracts in Beal and Otto Porter and a host of accomplished NBA players. The Wizards' ability to play without Wall may be put to a serious test very soon, as they await the diagnosis of his sore left knee. On Monday he will be evaluated by team doctors to determine his next step. Last time he was sidelined with this injury he was out nine games and the Wizards went 4-5. The upcoming stretch for the Wizards not a forgiving one. In their next 10 games they will see the Thunder (29-20), Raptors (32-15), Pacers (27-23), Sixers (24-21), Celtics (35-15) and Cavaliers (28-19). Six of their next 10 games are on the road and the Wizards have naturally been much better at home (15-9) than elsewhere (12-13). If Wall misses time, the Wizards will need to figure out a way to win without him. They are currently fifth in the East playoff picture, but only a game ahead of the eighth-place Milwaukee Bucks and four games up on the ninth-place Detroit PIstons. They are in playoff position, but not on sturdy ground.
Wizards showed against Hawks how they can win without John Wall
NBC Sports Washington | Jan 29