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Wizards' Wall shows improvement; Game 5 status uncertain

Wizards' Wall shows improvement; Game 5 status uncertain


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WASHINGTON (AP) — Washington Wizards guard John Wall took the next step in recovery from a fractured left hand and wrist: He dribbled.

The All-Star missed the last three playoff games since suffering five non-displaced fractures in his left wrist and hand in Game 1 against Atlanta on May 3.

Significant swelling and pain prevented Wall from dribbling with his left hand until Tuesday.

"He's moving in the right direction," Wizards coach Randy Wittman said. "The swelling is down again. Minimal swelling. He wanted to dribble the ball a little bit. Get the feel of it here."

Officially "questionable" on the team's injury report, Wall is scheduled to be examined by team doctors Tuesday or Wednesday.

Tied at 2-2, the best-of-seven Eastern Conference semifinal series shifts to Atlanta for Game 5 on Wednesday. Game 6 will take place Friday in Washington, and Game 7, if necessary, on Monday.

The Wizards are 5-0 with Wall during the playoffs, 1-2 without.

"It's good," guard Garrett Temple said of Wall's improvement. "Obviously, until he is ready to play we really don't know, but we've seen him out there dribbling a little bit, handling the ball, taking jump shots.

"That's always a good sign. ...If he's not able to play, just keep fighting, try to get another win and prolong that process for him."

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Benjamin Standig

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