The Wizards have finally gotten healthy this season and they’re currently occupying the 5th spot in the Eastern Conference, putting them in playoff position for the first time in nearly half a decade. Washington has surrounded their younger talent with veteran leadership, and it looks like they’ll be getting Al Harrington back sooner than later, which will add some scoring and depth to their bench.
According to Michael Lee of the Washington Post, Harrington has started to do some contact drills with the team this month after undergoing a knee procedure in December. Harrington got some “loose particles removed” from his knee, but that apparently hasn’t stopped him from dominating in the practices. Lee added that Harrington apparently played extremely well in the scrimmages and the rest of the team is excited to have him back soon. He’ll likely be ready after next week’s All-Star break.
“I can guarantee I’m going to play some time after all-star break,” Harrington said with a hearty laugh. “That’s for sure. I just don’t know which game. We haven’t really talked about a target game, but some time soon after that.
Randy Wittman has experimented with the rotations a lot this season, but prior to getting sidelined with injury, Harrington was the primary scorer off the bench. Washington was looked for a stretch 4 this offseason and immediately expressed interest in Harrington after he was waived by the Orlando Magic. Harrington has only played in 7 games this season, averaging about 8 points per game, but his offensive awareness and ability to shoot from the outside had really helped Washington space the floor for John Wall, Bradley Beal, and even Nene. Harrington is capable of scoring 15+ points on any given night and the Wizards could definitely use his veteran presence off the bench. He’s joked about becoming an assistant coach while watching the games from the sideline, but his teammates have credited him for his leadership this season. Even though he hasn’t contributed much on the floor, given his injury situation, he has played a big role for the team in the locker room.
If all goes well, Harrington will be back in a Wizards uniform right after this weekend. Trevor Booker and Kevin Seraphin have both contributed off the bench, albeit sporadically, but it will be nice having another solid scorer off the bench.