Warriors' James Wiseman (ankle) set to play after missing 11 games

ByKendra Andrews ESPN logo
Tuesday, January 24, 2023

SAN FRANCISCO -- Golden State Warriors center James Wiseman will likely make his return to the court Wednesday night against the Memphis Grizzlies after missing the last 11 games with a left ankle sprain.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr said Wiseman was questionable for the game following practice Tuesday, and Wiseman was later officially listed as probable on the injury report.

"I feel good, just taking it one day at a time," Wiseman said Tuesday. "I should be playing tomorrow, but we will see how it feels."

Wiseman was a full participant at practice Tuesday, and although the team didn't scrimmage that day Wiseman said he has been scrimmaging over the past few days.

Wiseman injured his ankle playing three-on-three Dec. 30. After going up for a shot against Andrew Wiggins, Wiseman landed on Wiggins' foot and rolled his left ankle. At the time, Kerr called Wiseman's status day-to-day.

Before his injury -- the latest in Wiseman's injury-riddled first three years in the league -- Wiseman played in seven games for the Warriors after returning from a month in the G League.

In those seven games, he averaged 7.4 points and 3.6 rebounds in 12.7 minutes.

"My role is rebounding, being vertical at the rim and being a rim protector. That's all I really need to do," Wiseman said. "I really don't need to score like that. I can, of course. But I don't need to. I need to do the small things on defense, which will get me on the floor more."

Wiseman's mindset adjustment to focus less on scoring came from watching Kevon Looney and Draymond Greenand the way they prioritize orchestrating the defense and letting the offense come to them in the flow of the game, rather than hunting it.

"This is what the team needs me to do, so that's what I'm going to do," Wiseman said. "It just takes reps, and I haven't had that many reps over the last three years. Now I'm starting to play more, and the G League helped me with that."