NBA Rumors: Wizards' Landry Shamet, Daniel Gafford suffer injuries ahead of training camp
The Washington Wizards are finally embarking on a proper rebuild, which means D.C. is front of line for the title of worst team in the NBA. On purpose. The Wizards have a solid collection of young talent — Jordan Poole, Deni Avdija, Bilal Coulibaly, Corey Kispert — with a desire to add another top pick or two to the mix.
Expectations are extremely low for the 2023-24 season, at least from a win-loss perspective. Rebuilding teams operate on different terms; success will be measured in player development and team habits, not on the scoreboard.
Still, part of developing a young team is establishing consistency and winning habits from day one. It's hard to get everyone on the same page when injuries strike, and the Wizards are dealing with a couple of maladies as training camp gets underway.
Landry Shamet, who arrived in Washington as part of the Beal trade, broke his big toe and is expected to miss 2-to-4 weeks.
Starting center Daniel Gafford is also hurt. He hurt his elbow in a recent pickup run and will miss 2-to-4 weeks as well.
Both players will factor heavily into Washington's plans for next season. Shamet is a veteran with a ton of competitive experience. He understands the nuances of NBA role player life and he's a tremendous movement shooter. Gafford is the starting center and the anchor of Washington's new-look defense.
Washington could have both players back by opening night — an Oct. 25 road matchup with the Indiana Pacers — but it will be hard for head coach Wes Unseld Jr. to get the full picture in camp with two rotation pieces out.