Wizards' Emeka Okafor (neck) out indefinitely

By Royce Young | NBA writer

He'll be back in Washington next year.       (Getty Images, illustration by EOB)
Emeka Okafor is out for an indefinite amount of time. (Getty Images)

Outside of having a fairly average roster, one of the biggest things that has held the Wizards back the past couple seasons is injuries.

And they're already dealing with a couple just weeks before training camp begins.

The team announced Wednesday center Emeka Okafor is out indefinitely with a herniated disk in his neck, which comes the same day the Wizards announced Chris Singleton is out 6-8 weeks with a foot fracture.

“I have worked hard over the summer and was looking forward to the start of training camp next week, so this is a disappointing and frustrating situation for me,” said Okafor in a statement. “But I have confidence that my teammates and coaches will be able to continue to take steps towards our goal of making the playoffs and that I will be able to do my part to help them once I return.”

Without Okafor, the Wizards get very thin inside very quickly. Okafor was likely slotted to start at center with Nene playing at power forward. But without Okafor, the Wizards will likely adjust to have Nene move to center and start either Kevin Seraphin or Trevor Booker alongside him.

Okafor isn't the interior defensive presence he once was, but he's still an effective finisher, shot blocker and rebounder. If he's out for a substantial amount of time, this is a pretty significant blow to the Wizards.

Okafor, 30, averaged 9.7 points and 8.8 rebounds in 79 games for the Wizards last season.

 
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