Washington Wizards: Now healthy, Troy Brown is ready to make an ‘IMPACT’

Washington Wizards Troy Brown (Photo by Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images)
Washington Wizards Troy Brown (Photo by Ned Dishman/NBAE via Getty Images) /

What will the Washington Wizards get out of Troy Brown this season?  Just ask his trainer, Joe Abunassar of IMPACT Basketball.

The Washington Wizards got some much-needed help from Troy Brown in his return to the court on Wednesday night, despite the 159-158 loss to the Houston Rockets.

But for the sophomore guard, Wednesday’s loss is just the beginning of what’s expected to be a strong second season in his NBA career. His summer training with Joe Abunassar, founder of IMPACT Basketball, is going to play a huge role in his developmental leap.

If anyone can tell us what to expect from Brown in this season, it’s his trainer, Joe Abunassar of IMPACT Basketball. Brown began training with Abunassar ahead of the 2018 NBA Draft- where he fell 15th to the Washington Wizards.

But the two have been working together since his high school days. Training days at IMPACT went from warm-ups all the way to five-on-five sessions throughout the summer. They had Brown working.

Their work together benefited Brown in his rookie season. He came on strong for the Wizards and averaged 10.4 points and 4.6 rebounds per game over his 10 starts for Washington. Plus he’s only getting better, despite what may or may not be perceived by the casual eye.

When I asked Joe what would “wow” Wizards fans this year, he said it’s the little things that set Brown apart:

"“I think to appreciate Troy you have to really understand basketball – because he is not a flashy guy, but someone who can be the stabilizing force on the floor at all times. Troy does the little things – makes the right pass, the right decision, etc. He will surprise people with his aggressive offense this season and looking to score a little more, but never at the expense of good basketball that will win games for the Wizards.”"

That being said, Brown and Abunassar got a lot of work in this past summer. Primarily, on his ability to get down the court, and shoot from beyond-the-arc:

"The two main areas of focus were speed and quickness, and shooting the three. We spent a lot of time on Troy’s body and his movement patterns to build his speed and quickness. His three-point shooting is improved significantly through his hard work."

The speed will show as time goes on. Fresh off a calf sprain, Brown’s explosiveness is still somewhat limited. But the improved three-pointer is already on display.

Brown went 2-for-4 from deep in his season debut, after shooting just a .319 clip from three in 51 games last season. Last season, he made two or more three-pointers in just three games. How’s that for immediate results.

A late-season performance from Brown in a win over the Denver Nuggets during his rookie year captured what we can expect he expands his game. He moved well off the ball, stayed aggressive defensively, got out and open in transition, and of course — knocked down the three-ball.

Consistent performances like these will help him crack the starting five this year. If he were to start, Brown would likely see time at small forward, but it’s his versatility that makes him dangerous in today’s NBA, says Abunassar.

"“Troy is a very, very smart and solid basketball player. He is versatile and what makes him so dangerous is his size and ability to play multiple positions. As the game becomes more and more position-less, Troy will become more and more valuable in many roles. As he will tell you himself, he can always improve in every area. And at only 20 years old, his game has a ton of room to grow to All-Star levels.”"

The one constant? Brown himself.

While his game has improved, Abunassar sees no difference in the quality character he met so many years ago.

"“The great thing about Troy is that he hasn’t changed a bit from the quality guy he was raised to be by his great parents. His confidence has increased of course but even at 18 and entering the draft, Troy had tremendous maturity and continues to be a true pro in all regards.”"

The Wizards want high character players. They’ve said it to anyone who will listen for months. In Brown, they have one.

To the Wizards, character and demeanor off the court seem just as important as ability on the court as they rebuild their roster. To that end, Brown’s got more than one surprise up his shooting sleeve for this season.

"“I think his overall demeanor and leadership on the court will surprise people. As a 19-year old rookie last year, there was a lot of learning to be done and there still is, but with that knowledge and the work he put in this summer, I think he will play like a seasoned veteran on both sides of the ball. The work he put in this summer was as good as anyone I’ve been around for 25 years and it will pay off.”"

All this praise might come as no surprise. After all, Brown is Abunassar’s guy. However, it’s not as if Abunassar doesn’t know what he’s talking about. His resume is filled to the brim with All-Star talent from NBA past and present. In his 25 years of experience, Abunassar has worked with Kevin Garnett, Chauncey Billups, Al Harrington, Kyle Lowry, Kristaps Porzingis, Myles Turner and many more.

These high-profile clients will only help Brown. Over the summer, the Wizards wing got to work out extensively with Lowry. That helps Brown in more ways than one.

"“Any time you have a chance to play with guys like that it will be helpful,” said Abunassar. I think training with Kyle Lowry this summer will also help Troy – just soaking in the approach and mentality of All-Star players. Troy has the physical tools and now just needs to put it all together. But he is way beyond his years in terms of understanding what it takes to get to the level Beal, Wall, and guys like Lowry have reached.”"

Coming into the draft, Brown received a few different NBA comparisons. He was tied to the likes of Caris LeVert, Evan Turner, or Kyle Anderson.

But those aren’t the names his trainer through out. Abunassar sees similarities between Brown and a former Finals MVP:

"“Troy is so versatile I think he can be an (Andre) Iguodala-type player and play anywhere from point guard to power forward in small lineups. He can run the offense, or play off the ball and guard multiple positions. Draymond Green and other similar players also come to mind.”"

Guys like Iguodala or Green are truly invaluable in this league. Being a glue guy in today’s NBA will earn you a longterm role within almost any contending roster.

Look at PJ Tucker, who went from planning yearly vacations during the NBA playoffs to contending among the Western Conference elite in the postseason with the Houston Rockets.

Next. For Washington Wizards, scoring will not be a problem. dark

If that’s Brown’s career trajectory, the Washington Wizards should be more than pleased. And if he can start branching out into that player this season? They’ll be even more prepared to launch another campaign for the Eastern Conference title once Wall returns.

And if Wednesday’s loss against Houston is any indication, fans can expect to see a lot more Troy Brown this season. And hopefully, a few more wins.