Monday November 15, 2010 3:15 p.m.
By Frank Hanrahan
Losses and now injuries are mounting for the 2-6 Washington Wizards as rookie guard John Wall and backup forward Yi Jianlian both missed practice today due to injury. Wall has a sprained left foot while Yi has a hyper-extended right knee. The injuries were suffered in the loss at Chicago on Saturday night and both players will be game time decisions tomorrow versus Toronto at Verizon Center.
"Both guys are day to day and we will reevaluate on a day to day basis. We will know ten minutes prior to the game where we are at," Wizards coach Flip Saunders said after practice today. Wall actually returned to the Bulls game after hurting the foot in the third quarter but Saunders told me that it didn't make it any worse to play on the foot in the fourth quarter for 3 minutes. Wall visited a doctor today and nothing new was revealed. "As of today we are in the same situation. Wall has a little of swelling, little sore... it's a sprain," Saunders said.
If Wall has to sit out, expect Gilbert Arenas to step in and join Kirk Hinrich in the starting back court. Arenas is coming off his best game of the season, scoring 30 points at the Bulls. "Kirk and Gil played a lot together and played pretty well together in the 4th quarter. So I think based on that they are starting and if John is there we will make that adjustment," Saunders said.
Meanwhile, forward Andray Blatche is hobbled by a bad knee that forced him to leave the Bulls game but he practiced today and will play versus Toronto. Blatche is hoping to have Wall back for the Raptors game. "Without him out there it will be a whole different ball game, Blatche said. "But we have Gilbert back, he's coming off a big game, hopefully his confidence is still high and he's still being his old self the old player that he was."
If Wall can't play, the Wizards would obviously not have their best player on the court as the 6'4 rookie is averaging 18.1 points and 9.8 assists and 3.3 steals through 6 games. Blatche is right, it will be a whole different ball game if he can't play.