The Golden State Warriors currently hold the longest winning streak in the league and have done it despite several injuries to their frontcourt rotation. The good news is that one of their key big men made significant progress on Tuesday as Kendra Andrews of ESPN reports center James Wiseman was cleared for contact 3-on-3 scrimmages.
James Wiseman is participating in a contact 3-on-3 scrimmage right now, as this tweet is sent. It’s his first contact work in 10 months.— Kendra Andrews (@kendra__andrews) February 8, 2022
Wiseman’s recovery hasn’t gone as smoothly as the Warriors would hope. He was set to return for training camp this season, but the team decided he wasn’t quite ready yet. In November, the team cleared Wiseman for practice so that he could work on his conditioning for an eventual return to play. However, in December, he was shut down when the team later revealed that Wiseman underwent a procedure to reduce some built up swelling in his injured knee.
Wiseman, who suffered his meniscus tear on April 10th of last season, only played in 39 games during his rookie year. He was inconsistent but showed enough flashes to keep Warriors fans intrigued by his potential.
One reason to be optimistic for Wiseman’s improvement has to do with the new additions to the team’s coaching staff this season. Assistant coaches Kenny Atkinson, DeJan Milojevic, and Jama Mahlalela have done wonders with the roster as multiple players have seen big jumps in their development. It’s very possible that Wiseman could see the same.
Here’s video of Wiseman practicing courtesy of The Athletic’s Anthony Slater:
Quick glimpse from Utah — James Wiseman getting in some 3-on-3 contact work. This is a very notable step in his rehab process. pic.twitter.com/LEACIo7JLQ— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) February 8, 2022
Even though Wiseman could be seen as a luxury due to the Warriors’ success in the regular season so far, he still adds a dimension that the team currently does not have with his combination of size and athleticism. Golden State has done a good job of mitigating the effects of their front court injuries, but a healthy Wiseman would go a long way to solving that problem.