All-Star point guard John Wall hasn’t played a single game for the Houston Rockets this season. Before the campaign started, Wall agreed with Houston’s plan to have him sit out while they pursued a trade since the franchise is rebuilding. However, the former Washington Wizards star recently changed his mind and wants to play again.
Wall is pretty active on social media. He recently posted a video of him working out with the caption, “Born Ready, Been Ready!! #Free Me #WallWay.”
The five-time All-Star is clearly ready to play again, but he wants people to know that a report by NBA reporter Jordan Schultz involving him and the Rockets is false.
John Wall calls out NBA reporter
Schultz reported that Wall sees himself as the No. 1 option on the Rockets and wants to have the green light at all times if he plays again. When the 2010 No. 1 overall draft pick saw the tweet, he replied by saying, “Lol that’s a lie.”
According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, Wall spoke to Rockets officials and stated his desire is to play. However, the franchise informed him that they want him to come off the bench. Wall reportedly doesn’t want to come off the bench and believes he should compete for a starting spot since he’s been a starter his entire career.
Wall averaged 20.6 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 6.9 assists for the Rockets last season while shooting 40.4% from the field. The Kentucky product has two years and $91.7 million remaining on his contract, making it almost impossible for the Rockets to trade him since he’s injury-prone and getting older.
Rockets head coach Stephen Silas confirmed with reporters that he and general manager Rafael Stone met with Wall to discuss the possibility of the one-time All-NBA guard playing again. He said it would be a goal to have Wall ready and available to play. However, there are additional considerations.
Stephen Silas on John Wall situation: “It has to be good for everybody”
After selecting Jalen Green with the second overall pick in the 2021 NBA Draft, the Rockets want another high pick in the 2022 draft. They also want to develop their young players this season, and Wall taking shots away from those players won’t help anyone but him.
That’s why Silas and the Rockets will only play Wall if it’s beneficial for all parties.
“It has to be good for everybody,” Silas said. “It has to be good for him. It has to be good for our organization. It has to be good for our group. There’s more to it than just one conversation and getting ready to play and now you play. There’s what does the role look like? What does it look like for the group? What does it look like for everybody? We’re at stage one.”
Wall is obviously better served to play for a contender. However, since he has so much money left on his contract, it’s hard to envision a playoff team giving up assets to acquire him.
With that said, Charania laid out four options for Wall and the Rockets.
What happens next?
According to Charania, the Rockets can “work on a plan to reintegrate Wall on the roster, waive him and set an offset clause in his contract to recoup any money he makes over the next two years, keep Wall around the team as a mentor, or decline Wall’s desire to play and send him home while having to continue to pay him.”
This is going to be a situation to pay close attention to moving forward. Wall can undoubtedly help a contender, but he’s probably not going to do a buyout, so becoming an unrestricted free agent isn’t plausible. The Rockets likely desperately want to trade the North Carolina native, but finding a trade partner will be daunting.
If you’re a Wall fan, sit back and relax because this may take a while.