Wizards struggle in first game back in almost two weeks after COVID-19 outbreak

Ryan Young
·Writer
·2 min read

The Washington Wizards looked rough on Sunday night — which makes sense.

The Wizards fell to the San Antonio Spurs 121-101 in what was their first contest in 13 days, thanks to a massive COVID-19 outbreak within the organization that resulted in six games getting postponed.

“If you haven’t played in a while, it takes a while, you can’t just turn the switch on,” Wizards coach Scott Brooks said after the loss, via NBC Sports Washington. “Your team or individual players can’t just turn it on. I’ve been around the league a long time, and you need some rhythm.”

Brooks: Our rhythm has ‘been totally taken away from us’

The Wizards last took the court on Jan. 11, when they beat the Phoenix Suns 128-107. Since then, they’ve had six games postponed — and likely exposed the Suns, who had several games of their own canceled.

Seven Wizards players reportedly contracted the coronavirus during that timespan, too. The team was only able to hold small individual workouts randomly since their game against the Suns, and didn’t get a full practice in until Wednesday.

Though they have been the most severe, the Wizards’ issues are not unique. The league has had to postpone 21 games already this season, all but one of which have come in the last two weeks. The NBA called off the Memphis Grizzlies’ Wednesday matchup with the Chicago Bulls on Sunday afternoon, too, which marked the Grizzlies’ fifth straight postponement.

While they didn’t win, Brooks wasn’t totally upset with what he saw out of his team on Sunday. And with how bad their bout with the coronavirus was, he knows it’s only a matter of time before they are back to full speed.

"With what we've gone through, I liked the way our guys competed," Brooks said, via NBC Sports Washington. "We've got another day to regroup, we've got two more cracks on this road trip, but I think all of our guys are gonna have to get back in an NBA rhythm.

"It's been totally taken away from us. We have a game, we have a flight, we're at a hotel, we're at a practice, those are our normal routines of an NBA season and we didn't really do anything for two weeks other than practice the last two or three days."

Washington Wizards coach Scott Brooks
The Wizards returned to the court on Sunday night after missing nearly two weeks due to a COVID-19 outbreak. (AP/Andy Clayton-King)

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