As the long wait is finally over on the side of the Washington Wizards hub, Rui Hachimura is nothing but thankful on making his way once again on the hardwood.
Indeed, after ending his long hiatus and playing his season debut on Sunday against the Orlando Magic, the Japanese sensation is delighted by the energy of NBA basketball.
“It was great,” Hachimura said about his return, via Ava Wallace of The Washington Post. “I been waiting for this moment. I had to take a little bit of time off, but I’m so happy back on the court and playing with these guys. I missed the feeling.”
Though he played in minimal time, Hachimura provided a power and boost off the bench, etching 6 markers and 3 boards in 14 minutes. As such, head coach Wes Unseld is impressed and has bright visions for the young forward moving forward prior to the game.
“Physically he looks great,” Unseld Jr. told reporters, via team insider Quinton Mayo. “He’s been back with us for a bit. It’s time.”
“His 3-pointer looks great which is an added dimension to his game. He gives us the ability to switch on defense 1-4 — sometimes playing small ball five.”
Hachimura, the ninth overall pick of the 2019 Draft, has been unavailable for the Wiz since the Tokyo Olympics wherein he served under his home nation’s basketball team. In the leave he had, issues about mental health and racism were rumored as focal factors of his breaking away from the franchise temporarily.
But now that he is suiting up again for Washington, it is uplifting to see that he is now committed to play and grow as a rising star. His presence will truly be appreciated as the Wizards are now seeing an unexpected downslide as the ninth seeded squad of the East.
The D.C. ball club will fly back home to face the Oklahoma City Thunder on Tuesday.