John Wall to Write ‘Playoffs’ on His Shoes for Every Game This Season

Washington Wizards point guard John Wall has talked obsessively about his desire to make the Playoffs this season. Wall tells Bleacher Report that he’ll scribble his wish on every pair of kicks he wears in 2013-’14: “You will see it on all my shoes,’ Wall said last week. ‘Every game pair is going to have `playoffs’ on it. That’s my main determination.’ This will be, Wall quickly noted, his fourth NBA season, and it is time to deliver on the promise of being the No. 1 pick of the 2010 draft. He has a new, $80 million contract extension in hand, healthy knees, a sturdy surrounding cast and the full support of the franchise. ‘I should be in the playoffs,’ Wall said. This is not an uncommon opinion. Many analysts and team executives believe Washington is primed to end its five-year postseason drought, based on the Wizards’ strong showing last season after Wall returned from a knee injury. The Wizards went 24-25 with Wall in the lineup. They were even better when Wall and Bradley Beal, their sweet-shooting rookie guard, shared the court. From Jan. 12 (the night Wall returned) through April 2 (the night Beal was lost to a leg injury), the Wizards went 23-18. Even a .500 record should be sufficient to make the postseason in the top-heavy, bottom-poor Eastern Conference. (Last season, the Milwaukee Bucks earned a playoff spot with a .463 winning percentage.) The question is whether Wall, the Wizards’ blazing-fast, turnover-prone, jump shot-challenged point guard, is ready to lead them there. There are doubts. Wall knows this. He has seen the critiques and the positional rankings. He carries them on his phone, as photographic motivation. ‘I got snappings of all type of rankings,’ Wall said. ‘I like it.’ Wall looks in the mirror and sees a top 10 point guard—and potentially ‘the best point guard in the league.'”