UPDATE: The game has been postponed:
Confirmed that Wizards-Jazz has been postponed.— Jorge Castillo (@jorgeccastillo) January 22, 2016
As of Friday morning, the Wizards are still scheduled to host the Utah Jazz in a basketball game at the Verizon Center on Saturday evening. This, despite most projections now predicting the D.C. area could receive over two feet of snow between Friday afternoon and game time as well as the fact that the Jazz can't even fly in early to beat the storm because they have a game in Brooklyn on Friday night.
Despite these obstacles, the NBA is still trying to push ahead with the game. Jorge Castillo explains why:
Postponing Saturday’s contest would create more of a scheduling ordeal because the Jazz will return to the East Coast just once more this season. After hosting the Nets on Feb. 27, Utah is scheduled to travel to Boston on Feb. 29 to play the Celtics and then to Toronto to face the Raptors on March 2. They would complete the four-game road trip with stops in Memphis and New Orleans on March 4 and 5.
As a result, the Jazz would probably have to squeeze in a trip back east for just one game in Washington, which is rare for teams two time zones apart.
Logistically speaking, this is understandable, even if the Wizards take a huge hit at the because of how few people would show up at the game. And let's be honest, it's not like the Wizards are giving up a major home court advantage if most of the crowd doesn't show up. If anything, it might be more raucous than normal because anyone who shows up would have to be fully invested in the game just by the commitment they made in showing up.
Still, there's a very practical reason for the Wizards to root for Saturday's game to be snowed out, and it all goes back to rest. The team is still dealing with injuries to Alan Anderson, Kris Humphries and Drew Gooden. Plus, Bradley Beal and Nene are still on minutes restrictions after returning from their injuries. An unexpected day off would give them more time to heal.
And let's not forget who would benefit most from some time off: John Wall. He's played in every game this season, despite racking up all sorts of aches and pains along the way. And as J. Michael of CSN Mid-Atlantic noted earlier in the week, neither he or Randy Wittman are the types to ask for rest of their own volition:
A player, especially a proud one like Wall who always feels he has something to prove, isn't going to sit himself down early. But the Wizards (19-21) probably should be more diligent in saving him, focusing on the long game and throwing in the white flag sooner.
But coach Randy Wittman is a bit old school. There's always a chance that a team can come back and win if they find a spark but it wasn't happening with Wall in that game Monday. The Blazers led by 24. Such a deficit isn't insurmountable but the Wizards trailed 94-76 entering the fourth quarter.
"He's played 40 before," Wittman said when asked about Wall's minutes. "We had an off day."
Certainly, you can respect that Wall and Wittman want to claw their way through the pain and the aches, but some extra rest really wouldn't be a bad thing here. People won't remember how valiantly they played through injury, but they will remember whether or not this year's squad made the playoffs. A little bit of extra rest now might be just what Wall needs to get his second wind and help the team make a strong push before the All-Star break.
Yes, a rescheduled game will undoubtedly create its own complications later on the season, but at least then the Wizards stand a better shot of having enough healthy bodies to weather the storm. As things stand, the only storm they can weather right now is the one that could drop historic amounts on the region.