By Chris Lingebach

How happy are the Wizards to have John Wall back?

“He’s the leader. He makes our offense go and it’s good to have the engine back,” said Wizards coach Scott Brooks, who is presented by Greenberg and Bederman, to The Sports Junkies. “He leads us. It’s good to have him back.”

Wall missed eight games with inflammation and discomfort in his left knee. He underwent PRP therapy (platelet-rich plasma) and viscosupplementation injections to reduce that inflammation.

Brooks says Wall was a little gassed after his first game back — Wednesday’s 93-87 win over the Memphis Grizzlies — in which Wall played 27-and-a-half minutes, scoring 13 points with four assists and two steals.

Brooks will closely monitor how many minutes Wall plays in the first few weeks of his return, which was a tough discussion the coach had to have with his star point guard.

“Yeah, I mean, it was a talk,” Brooks said. “He definitely wants to play a lot of minutes. I told him it’s gonna be mid-20s maybe, like 28 tops. Do that for a few games. No more than 30.”

“He understands, because we need him. We need him,” he said. “It’s not anything that’s a surprise to anybody. We need John Wall and we need him to play well for us to be successful.”

“He said he was tired,” Brooks said of Wall’s return game. “And you should be. You should be tired when you play in an NBA game. I have problems when players are not tired. During a timeout, they should be sweating and breathing hard and they should be tired, and that’s what you have a timeout for and that’s why you have a night off.”

“But he definitely was winded a little bit,” he added, “because he hasn’t played in a game the couple weeks he missed, I think 10 games or so.”

Follow @ChrisLingebach and @1067TheFan on Twitter


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