The good news about the Washington Wizards at this point in the NBA preseason is that there are no significant injuries to the roster. But the bad news is that they’re still not playing at full strength, even if they’re otherwise resting players.
Yesterday, head coach Scott Brooks spoke to the media and announced that Bradley Beal and Russell Westbrook, the team’s starting backcourt, are expected to play tomorrow when Washington hosts the Detroit Pistons.
Scott Brooks says that there's a "good chance" that Russell Westbrook and Bradley Beal play Thursday night. He'll know more tomorrow.— Bullets Forever (@BulletsForever) December 15, 2020
He will speak later today, but I think the backcourt’s playing barring an injury. And ... Westbrook is also being told to not dunk in practice so he won’t hurt himself.
The no dunk order hasn't been lifted! Scott wants Westbrook to save his dunks for games as a way to "protect him from his own wiring, his own mindset"— Bullets Forever (@BulletsForever) December 15, 2020
After all, they played shorthanded to the Brooklyn Nets last weekend and it only makes sense to see what they have with a full slate.
Davis Bertans, who is now back in Washington didn’t play against the Nets either. Brooks also mentioned that he is unlikely to play tomorrow against the Pistons. According to Chase Hughes of NBC Sports Washington, Bertans has not played in 5-on-5 scrimmages yet, so he’s not as acclimated to the new players on the team.
Given that Bertans is an elite shooter however, I’m not too worried about the Latvian Laser missing tomorrow’s game. He’ll be draining threes left and right in games before we know it.