- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Washington Wizards swingman Martell Webster will be at training camp Tuesday.

Webster is recovering from late-June surgery to repair a herniated disc in his lower back. At the time of the surgery, Webster was projected to miss 3-5 months.

He won’t be fully ready Tuesday, according to coach Randy Wittman.

“He’s day-to-day,” Wittman said. “He’s probably not, obviously, going to be 100 percent come Tuesday, but he’s going to be able to do some things.

“When you’re dealing with back surgery, it’s just a matter of your body getting everything (regenerated), the nerves, and everything of that nature. We’ve got to be careful with that, but he’s in here every day working and able to do some things. You don’t ever hear me say two weeks, three weeks — it’s just one of those things you don’t know. But, he’s progressing really well. If that continues the way it is, he’ll be back.”

Webster was injured during a routine workout at the team’s practice facility in the summer. The resulting back surgery was the third of his nine-year career. He had prior back surgeries in October of 2010 and September of 2011.

Webster’s injury, and the departure of Trevor Ariza, appears to clear a path for Otto Porter or Glen Rice Jr. to get more minutes. Paul Pierce was brought in to be the likely starter at small forward after Ariza signed a four-year deal with the Houston Rockets.

The pressure on Porter, the third overall pick in 2013, is mounting. He played 37 games last season and averaged 2.1 points per game after a strained hip flexor nagged him throughout the season. He didn’t debut until Dec. 6, 2013.

Healed, Porter played in the Las Vegas Summer League. He said he did not work on any one thing.

“Just everything, basically,” Porter said. “Strengthening, ball-handling skills. Trying to stay healthy. That was my main focus this summer, trying to stay healthy.”

With training camp approaching Tuesday, that will remain a focus for him. Pierce will be 37 years old soon. Ariza is gone. Webster’s return is questionable.

Again, the spotlight will shift to Porter.

“There’s always going to be pressure,” Porter said. “It’s how you deal with it. I feel like last year, being hurt, pressure to play … the patience that my coach and teammates had with me was unbelievable. I definitely can deal with (pressure).”

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