Wizards' Dwight Howard to Meet with Nerve Specialist over Glute Injury

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistNovember 28, 2018

Washington Wizards center Dwight Howard looks at the scoreboard during the first half of the team's NBA basketball game against the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday, Nov. 18, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Al Drago)
Al Drago/Associated Press

The Washington Wizards announced big man Dwight Howard will not play in Wednesday's game against the New Orleans Pelicans.

Candace Buckner of the Washington Post noted head coach Scott Brooks said Howard will meet with a nerve specialist in the next day or two.

The 32-year-old has dealt with a gluteal injury this season but was durable during the 2017-18 campaign, appearing in 81 games for the Charlotte Hornets. It was the first time he played at least 80 games since the 2009-10 season, as injuries have been an issue throughout the latter half of his career.

Washington signed Howard this past offseason to bolster its frontcourt depth, and he has responded with 12.8 points and 9.2 rebounds a night in nine games.

While he has been productive for stretches in his first season on the Eastern Conference team, he is also past his prime and no longer the steady force he was when he built a Hall of Fame resume that includes eight All-NBA selections, three Defensive Player of the Year awards and eight All-Star Game nods.

Thomas Bryant will start Wednesday's contest, and the Wizards could turn to Ian Mahinmi and Jason Smith to play more minutes in the frontcourt alongside Markieff Morris while Howard is sidelined, though neither is a primary contributor.