REPORT: East teams planning as if John Wall will play when 2019-20 season resumes
Because the postseason is within reach for the Washington Wizards, some teams believe point guard John Wall will be on the court when the season resumes.
Wall has not played basketball since December of 2018 due to a ruptured Achilles tendon, and both he and the team have said he will not play this year.
However, Ian Begley of SNY TV reported that some Eastern Conference teams heading to Orlando as part of the NBA’s return-to-play plan are expecting Wall to make his return.
The Wizards and John Wall have both said he's not going to return in 2019-20 but some Eastern Conference teams expecting to head to Orlando are planning as if Wall may return to the court once the season resumes. Wall has been sideline since December 2018.
— Ian Begley (@IanBegley) June 3, 2020
The Wizards found new life in their playoff chase after the NBA announced owners will accept a plan that will feature 22 of the league’s 30 teams.
This plan will include a play-in for the final playoff spots in each conference, followed by the standard 16-team playoff format thereafter.
First, however, teams will play eight regular season games to find some sort of resolution (via Jeff Zillgitt of USA TODAY):
The plan also includes an eight-game finish to the regular season, then a play-in tournament for the eighth seed in both conferences. If the ninth seed is not within four games of the eight seed, there won’t be a play-in game in that conference. If there is a play-in game, it will be double elimination for the eighth seed and single elimination for the ninth seed.
The Wizards are currently ninth in the East and 5.5 games back of the Orlando Magic for the eighth and final playoff spot. However, because of the play-in game, they are realistically just 1.5 games back.
As Begley stated, the Wizards have been insistent in holding Wall out. At the same time though, Wall has said he is “110 percent” healthy.
Perhaps owner Ted Leonsis will give Wall the green light with the playoffs almost within reach. Then again, clearing John Wall would hardly be worth it if he were to risk re-injuring himself for a play-in game.