John Wall returns from knee injury, giving Rockets their desired lineup

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Ben DuBose
·2 min read
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Veteran point guard John Wall returned to his usual role of starting point guard for the Rockets during Friday night’s home game against the Detroit Pistons. Wall had missed the first five games out of the recent All-Star break after bruising his left knee during a Houston practice.

Wall started next to Victor Oladipo, Danuel House Jr., Jae’Sean Tate, and Christian Wood, representing the first time in more than six weeks that Houston has had its desired starting lineup, in full.

Not coincidentally, the Rockets (11-28) lost 18 straight games over that stretch, which set a new franchise record among losing streaks.

It’s unclear if Wall’s return is permanent, since multiple media reports have suggested that Wall might have that knee scoped later in the year. If that’s the case, it could end Wall’s 2020-21 season prematurely.

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But after missing most of the last two seasons due to an Achilles injury, Wall clearly wants to play some more basketball before going down that road — and potentially help his team turn things around. As a result, head coach Stephen Silas is thrilled to have the five-time All-Star back.

“It’s really great to have the whole roster,” Silas said before Friday’s game. “We haven’t had this group together, on the floor, basically all season. I’m definitely looking forward to it. I’m sure it’ll be a little disjointed, at times, but we’re going to have our best group on the floor, tonight. That’s good for us, and it’s good for Rockets’ fans, for sure.”

Now 30 years old, Wall entered Friday averaging 21.0 points and 6.0 assists in 31.7 minutes per game. For the No. 1 overall pick from the NBA’s 2010 draft, it’s his first season in Houston after spending the first decade of his professional career with the Washington Wizards.

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