Eastern Notes: House, Whiteside, Pistons

Wizards rookie Danuel House suffered a right wrist injury which could sideline him for an extended stretch, Candace Buckner of the Washington Post tweets. The 6’7” forward out of Texas A&M has only appeared in one game with Washington but has also seen action with Delaware in the D League. This could present a roster decision for the Wizards, who currently are at the 15-man limit. House’s $543,471 salary for the season becomes guaranteed on January 10th. The injury may increase the possibility that Washington will shed House, who was signed after a solid showing in summer-league play, to free up a spot.

In other developments around the Eastern Conference:

  • Heat center Hassan Whiteside‘s winding road to NBA stardom provides hope for other players scrapping to make the league, Pistons coach and president of basketball operations Stan Van Gundy told the media earlier this week. Whiteside played 19 games for the Kings his first two seasons and wound up in the D League, China and Lebanon before resurfacing with the Heat, where he emerged as one of the league’s top centers. Whiteside, who re-signed with the Heat for four years and $98MM over the summer, is averaging 16.9 points and a league-best 15.1 rebounds. “Hassan Whiteside is a great lesson for other players and a great lesson for those of us making personnel decisions in the league, especially with big guys,” Van Gundy said. “Sometimes it doesn’t happen overnight. Hassan Whiteside right now is playing as well as any big man in the league. His numbers are mindboggling.”
  • Pistons forward Stanley Johnson served a one-game suspension for violating team rules on Friday, just the latest setback for the 2015 lottery pick. Johnson was benched for a game during Detroit’s four-game homestand this week, though he’ll likely rejoin the rotation with Reggie Bullock sidelined indefinitely by a knee injury. Johnson is averaging 4.4 points on 40.7% shooting. “He’s off to a rough start,” Van Gundy said. “He’s hasn’t shot the ball well at all. He’s still competing hard defensively but he’s really struggling to get the ball in the basket. It’s hard when perimeter players aren’t getting the ball in the basket, no matter what else you’re doing.”
  • Bullock will get a second opinion on his knee injury early next week, Van Gundy said on Friday. Bullock, who will be a restricted free agent next summer if Detroit extends a qualifying offer, suffered a left knee meniscus tear in the first half against Miami on Wednesday. There are several options being mulled, according to Van Gundy. “Not all surgeries are created equal,” he said. “There is a couple of different ways we can go with that.”
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