WASHINGTON --Washington Wizardspoint guard John Wall has five non-displaced fractures in his injured left wrist and hand and his status for the rest of the Eastern Conference semifinal series against the Atlanta Hawks is uncertain.
While the Wizards say Wall's status has yet to be determined, the All-Star's injury comes as a major blow to Washington, which is tied 1-1 with the Hawks in this best-of-seven series. Game 3 is in Washington on Saturday.
Wall initially felt as if he had fractured his wrist -- which he said he broke in high school -- when he came crashing down hard late in the second quarter of Game 1. He remained in the game and said X-rays after the game revealed no breaks. Wall also said he got two opinions on his injury and was told it was just a bad sprain.
His left hand swelled up considerably after Game 1 and he was unable to get the swelling to go down significantly.ESPN's Britt McHenry reports that Wall's wrist is too swollen right now to even evaluate and that the team needs the swelling to subside before determining his status.
After sitting out Game 2, Wall returned to Washington and underwent multiple examinations, revealing the displaced fractures in his hand. The Wizards said they and Wall were consulting with several physicians and specialists to determine the next course of action.
"With the swelling and the stuff it has been, we knew maybe there's not good news there," head coach Randy Wittman said. "We will see as we move forward what that actually means. He is still consulting with doctors. It's still pretty swollen. He can't do anything let alone if he didn't have any broken bones."
Wittman, who said Wall is the toughest player he has ever been around in his basketball career, remains hopeful that his point guard can return at some point.
"I hope he could have played Game 2," Wittman said of Wall, who was a late scratch before that game. "But he didn't. We just got to move one day at a time. There's no timetable for something like this, I guess is the best way I can put it. We got to be prepared as a team to play without him. I think the guys are doing that."
"Knowing John, if there is a slight chance he can, he's holding out for that," Wittman added. "That is the type of kid he is."
The Wizards are now looking at the prospect of trying to beat the top-seeded Hawks without their franchise player.
"Honestly have no idea if John will play," Wall's backcourt mate Bradley Beal told McHenry. "Praying for the best but prepared for the worst. We still feel like we have the tools and game plan to win."
Wall was averaging 17.4 points, 12.6 assists and 1.4 blocks in the playoffs and had four consecutive double-doubles before missing Game 2.
Backup Ramon Sessions scored 21 points in Game 2 filling in for Wall, but it will take a collective effort to replace the point guard.
"It's definitely not only going to come from me but other guys will have the opportunity to step up,"Paul Pierce said. "By no means do we feel like this series is over or our goals change. We will continue to go out there and reach for our goals.
"It is not going to come from one person. One guy cannot fill John's role. It is going to have to be collectively. (But) nobody picked us in the first round. Nobody is picking us in this round. Nobody is expecting these guys to go in there and do the job. But we in this locker room, we expect to."
Still, Pierce has said all season long that the Wizards will only go as far as Wall and Bealtake them.
"It is definitely difficult for the team but I am sure it is even more devastating for John," Pierce said. "He has worked so hard to get to this point in his career. To play so well throughout these playoffs, to hear that type of news, I know it is devastating.
"I'm more hurt for him than anything because I know how badly he wants to be out there. My prayers go out to him and his family right now."