Now that Washington Wizards’ John Wall is out for the season and Otto Porter is returning from injury, the team has an interesting question.
The correlation here is certainly not equal to causation but it’s clear that with a bigger role in the offense, Porter has been able to be more productive on the floor.
Tom Haberstroh noted how much better the forward has looked without Wall in the mix (via NBC Sports):
“We also might see a different Otto Porter now that Wall is sidelined. In the 121 minutes that Porter has played without Wall this season, he has played like the star they envisioned, averaging 19.6 points, 8.3 rebounds per 36 minutes while shooting 52 percent from the floor and 38.9 percent from deep, per NBA.com tracking. Those numbers shrink to 13.2 points, 6.6 rebounds and 47 percent shooting with Wall on the floor. Last season, a similar trend followed: Porter’s numbers ballooned without Wall across the board.”
We looked at how the Wizards have performed since the start of the 2016-17 season, the first season combo guard Tomas Satoransky left Liga ACB in Spain to join the NBA. During the time that Wall has missed, Satoransky has typically been his replacement.
Porter has played 908 minutes alongside Satoransky and Bradley Beal but without Wall in that stretch. He has averaged 17.5 points, 7.6 rebounds and 3.0 assists per 36 minutes with a 22.2 percent usage rate, easily elevating his primary counting stats without the franchise point guard on the floor.
Compare that rate to how Porter has performed alongside Beal and Wall since October 2016. He has averaged 14.2 points, 6.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists per 36 minutes with a 15.8 usage rate while sharing the floor with Wall and Beal.
Washington outscored opponents by 8.8 points per 100 possessions when Beal and Porter shared the court with Satoransky as well as Marcin Gortat and Markieff Morris last season. The Wizards also maintained a positive point differential with the same five-man group the previous season.
Gortat is no longer in the fold for this squad, one can still expect the same trend to continue with Thomas Bryant replacing him. Porter is initially coming off the bench as he returns from his injury but fans can expect his production to return to normal as he gets his sea legs back from under him.