The Wizards are not the same team without Nene on the court — he can protect the rim on defense, score from the low post on offense and essentially give them a quality presence in the paint.
But it may be a while before they have that.
Nene had been on the “expect him to miss training camp but he should be good to go for the season” list due to plantar fasciitis (something he battled last season), but now that timeline seems more vague. As in there isn’t one. Here is Nene’s quote on being ready for the start of the season, via CSNWashington.com.
“I hope to. We’ll be positive. We’ll work to be on that time,” Nene recently said about the timetable for his return.
Coach Randy Wittman was less helpful with his vague answer. So we really have no idea.
The problem with plantar fasciitis — a tightness of the tissue along the bottom of the foot that leads to pain when walking or running — is that the only real cure is rest. Nene got some last season but then played through it for Brazil at the Summer Olympics. Now the Wizards are just waiting it out.
Washington has dreams of a playoff berth this season but their margin for error is slim. And without Nene slim looks a lot more like none. Just keep this on the something to watch list.