Updates from Friday, Mar. 21
Michael Lee of The Washington Post provides an update on Marcin Gortat's status:
It's official: Marcin Gortat will play vs LAL. No back-straining dunks in warmups today #wizards— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) March 22, 2014
Marcin Gortat is out with a strained lower back #wizards— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) March 21, 2014
Chris Haynes of CSNNW.com reported that Gortat may have tweaked something in pregame warm-ups:
Wizards C Marcin Gortat walked gingerly to the locker room holding his lower back after his pre-game warmup. He was in obvious pain.— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) March 21, 2014
NBA.com shows how it happened:
His back had been giving him problems over the last few days, and the warm-up pushed him over the edge:
Marcin Gortat had been dealing with back soreness for a while but tweaked it during pre-game warmups. Will miss 1st game of season #wizards— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) March 21, 2014
Considering how much Gortat's back has been bothering him, it's anybody's guess as to when he might return. It will inevitably get better with rest, but it could remain an issue for the rest of the season. A sore back isn't something that you can take a few pills for, and then it's all better.
Washington will need a healthy Gortat down the final stretch. While the Wizards are pretty much a lock for the postseason, they'll at least want to remain in the top six of the Eastern Conference to avoid a first-round matchup against the Indiana Pacers or Miami Heat in the playoffs.