Standouts Bradley Beal and Spencer Dinwiddie will skip the NBA relaunch later this month.
Beal, the Washington Wizards’ leading scorer this season (30.5 points per game, No. 2 in the league), and Dinwiddie, one of the Brooklyn Nets’ top players, won’t play at Walt Disney World in Florida, where NBA teams begin practicing on Friday.
Beal might need surgery
Despite hoping to return to the court, Bradley Beal hasn’t rebounded from a right rotator cuff injury.
As a result, surgery might be required
“He’s worked religiously to get this thing back to where it feels right, and it just hasn’t felt right,” Wizards general manager Tommy Sheppard told reporters this week. “To hear him say himself that he’s just not right right now, ‘I’ve got to keep working, I’ve got more work to do,’ made that decision much easier.”
Last week, Bradley Beal said that he wanted to compete for the Wizards in Florida.
“I was loving my game this year and how I was playing towards the end of the year,” Beal said, according to The Associated Press. “It’s more or less going to be a decision that comes down to the medical staff and I, just because of our precautions and just coming back from being zero to 100. Then I had some nagging stuff at the end of the year we’re trying to clean up, too.”
For Bradley Beal, medical advice was the deciding factor.
“This was a difficult decision and one that I did not take lightly as the leader of this team,” Beal said in a statement. “I wanted to help my teammates compete for a playoff spot in Orlando but also understand that this will be best for all of us in the long term.”
Dinwiddie tests positive again
Nets guard Spencer Dinwiddie is also staying out of the NBA bubble in Florida, where 22 of 30 teams are set to resume their season on July 30.
Dinwiddie on Tuesday tested positive for COVID-19 again.
“After another positive test yesterday and considering the symptoms, (the Nets), team doctors and I have decided that it would be in the best interest for me and the team that I do not play in Orlando,” Dinwiddie tweeted on Wednesday. “I will be supporting the guys every step of the way!”
At least six Brooklyn Nets players have tested positive for the coronavirus, including Dinwiddie, in recent weeks.
The 27-year-old Dinwiddie averaged 20.6 points in 64 games in the 2019-20 camaign. (The NBA suspended the season on March 11 when Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert contracted COVID-19.)
Bolstering the Nets
While the absence of Bradley Beal and Spencer Dinwiddie will be big losses for the Wizards and Nets, respectively, Brooklyn is preparing for the infusion of a newcomer’s offensive talents to the mix.
Veteran guard Jamal Crawford is joining the Nets, sources have told ESPN and other media outlets.
Crawford, 40, has averaged 14.6 points in his NBA career, which began in 2000 with the Chicago Bulls. He has played in 1,326 NBA games, making 433 starts.