Wizards' John Wall to play in Game 5 after missing past 3 games

ByOhm Youngmisuk ESPN logo
Thursday, May 14, 2015

ATLANTA -- Washington Wizards point guard John Wall is active and will start Game 5 Wednesday night against the Atlanta Hawks.

Wall went through a vigorous warm-up before the game and tested his left hand/wrist with and without a protective brace. Wall returns after missing the past three games with five non-displaced fractures in his left hand, an injury he suffered in the second quarter of Game 1 on May 3.

Wall said at the Wednesday morning shootaround that he still felt pain in the hand/wrist but that he had regained motion after the swelling had reduced.

"Well, the swelling went down a lot," Wall said on Wednesday morning. "There is still going to be pain there no matter what. I don't have so much stuff wrapped around my fingers like I am in a cast or anything [anymore]."

"I got motion to do things that I feel comfortable doing," he added. "It is just [can] I feel very comfortable and confident in doing it. That's the biggest key for me."

The Wizards officially called Wall a game-time decision even after announcing he was active for the game an hour before. When the probable starting lineups were initially written on a board in the media room, the Wizards had a dash at point guard half an hour before tipoff. Not long after, Wall's name was added.

Coach Randy Wittman said Wall would not have a minutes restriction on him if he was able to play.

"He's not in any kind of situation where we have to worry about number of minutes, so that'll be a non-issue," Wittman said before the game.

"If he can't play, he's not going to dress," Wittman added.

Wall, who went into the game averaging 17.4 points and 12.6 assists in the postseason, was asked about the Hawks potentially testing his injured hand if he plays. The point guard said he has a high tolerance for pain and that he had been "smacking" his injured hand around to test it.

"It's a part of basketball," Wall said of the Hawks potentially hitting his hand. "... That is what you are supposed to do when somebody is injured. Probably the nature of the game."