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Wizards Begin Training Camp Without Howard

While the Washington Wizards worked on three-point shooting, free-throw shooting and other drills Tuesday during first day of training camp, Dwight Howard and Austin Rivers — two key offseason acquisitions — were on the sidelines.

Wizards head coach Scott Brooks said during media day Monday that Howard, 32, probably wouldn’t be available as he rests a sore back.

“He’s making steady progress,” Brooks said. “There’s no rush. We don’t play until [first regular season game Oct. 18]. We’ve got plenty of time.”

Howard, a veteran center who averaged 16 points and 12 rebounds last season with the Charlotte Hornets, signed as a free agent in July to help increase rebounding for the Wizards, which ranked near the bottom half of the league last season.

Rivers, 26, a backup guard who came over from the Los Angeles Clippers in the trade for center Marcin Gortat, did practice Tuesday, but left early due to neck spasms, Brooks said.

Both Howard and Rivers are listed as day to day.

Meanwhile, first-round draft pick Troy Brown Jr. took in his first-ever NBA training camp.

Brown, who turned 19 on July 28 and played one year at the University of Oregon, said he’s adjusting to the pro game.

“The speed of the game is completely different [from college],” he said. “The game is a lot faster, but at the same time it is a low slower because of the sets and actions. It’s definitely different.”

Playing alongside an All-Star backcourt of John Wall and Bradley Beal also helps.

“They’re great guys,” Brown said. “When I go ask John a question, he answers it thoroughly to help me understand as if he was rookie. They’ve been really good with me, so I appreciate that.”

The Wizards will continue training camp for the rest of the week and host first preseason game Oct. 1 against the New York Knicks at Capital One Arena in northwest D.C.

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William J. Ford – Washington Informer Staff Writer

I decided I wanted to become a better writer while attending Bowie State University and figured that writing for the school newspaper would help. I’m not sure how much it helped, but I enjoyed it so much I decided to keep on doing it, which I still thoroughly enjoy 20 years later. If I weren’t a journalist, I would coach youth basketball. Actually, I still play basketball, or at least try to play, once a week. My kryptonite is peanut butter. What makes me happy – seeing my son and two godchildren grow up. On the other hand, a bad call made by an official during a football or basketball game makes me throw up my hands and scream. Favorite foods include pancakes and scrambled eggs which I could eat 24-7. The strangest thing that’s ever happened to me, or more accurately the most painful, was when I was hit by a car on Lancaster Avenue in Philadelphia. If I had the power or money to change the world, I’d make sure everyone had three meals a day. And while I don’t have a motto or favorite quote, I continue to laugh which keeps me from driving myself crazy. You can reach me several ways: Twitter @jabariwill, Instagram will_iam.ford2281 or e-mail, wford@washingtoninformer.com

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