WASHINGTON -- Eleven months into his recovery from Achilles surgery, Wizards point guard John Wall is making rapid progress in his rehab.
Last week he began playing in three-on-three scrimmages. Now, this week he has ramped up to four-on-four contact games with members of the Wizards player development staff, plus teammate Johnathan Williams.
That's a notable step, as he is technically facing off with some NBA competition. And, as you can see in videos of the games, he is looking quite good.
Wall appears to still have his trademark straight-line speed on the fastbreak. On several occasions, he blew past defenders to score at the rim.
John Wall is playing in a full-court scrimmage getting buckets. pic.twitter.com/JMIMisfEnw— Chase Hughes (@ChaseHughesNBCS) January 13, 2020
His three-point shot looked particularly good. He sank a series of threes in the halfcourt offense.
Pull-up three from John Wall. pic.twitter.com/XLTV0ILofV— Chase Hughes (@ChaseHughesNBCS) January 13, 2020
Though his mobility was the most interesting thing to watch, given the nature of his injury, it was Wall's passing that stood out above all. It is, of course, his best skill and some of the assists he had were the types of plays only a few people in the league can make.
A few of his passes provided some cool moments with Wizards assistant coach and Washington Mystics star Kristi Toliver. They are two of the best guards in D.C. basketball history and this is the first time the public has been able to see them operate as teammates.
Just two D.C. All-Star point guards linking up for three. John Wall to Kristi Tolliver, swish.— Chase Hughes (@ChaseHughesNBCS) January 13, 2020
D.C. basketball fans, rejoice. pic.twitter.com/UkgHLVX7QP
It was easy to see how much Wall was enjoying this step in his recovery. Keep in mind he hasn't played in a real game since Dec. 26 of 2018. He clearly misses the game and seemed thrilled to back in his element.
After one buzzer-beater, he threw a big fist pump to celebrate. And on a series of plays, he stared at the cameras afterward. He was creating basketball highlights for the first time in over a year.
John Wall with the major one-handed dunk and then maybe the camera staredown. Fantastic. pic.twitter.com/JMPJM63m2A— Fred Katz (@FredKatz) January 13, 2020
Wall did most of his best work on offense. On defense, you could see the areas of his rehab that still need to be filled out. Achilles injuries are notorious for affecting lateral quickness. It's usually the last direction of movement that comes back. Wall was limited staying in front of his man at times as he was clearly keeping that in mind and playing it safe.
Wall, though, did have a chase-down block on one play. That is his signature move on the defensive end.
Wall had his surgery on Feb. 12 of 2019. The recovery timeline is 11-to-15 months. Now that he is in the 12th month, Wall is already able to put on a show and have a lot of fun doing it. That's a great sign.
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John Wall looks great in full-court scrimmage at Wizards practice originally appeared on NBC Sports Washington