Wizards small forward Martell Webster had surgery June 26 to repair a herniated disc in his lower back. The microdiscectomy surgery procedure was performed by Dr. Robert Watkins Jr. in Los Angeles following a consultation with the Wizards' team doctors earlier during the week. Webster was injured during a routine workout at the Wizards' practice facility. He began rehab following the surgery and is expected to miss approximately 3-5 months before returning to the court. The procedure will cause Webster to miss training camp and probably the start of the regular season as well.
Webster is no stranger to back issues. This recent surgery was the third back procedure Webster has undergone during his nine-year career. The first time Webster had surgery was in October 2010, and it caused him to miss almost half of the 2010-11 season while playing for the Minnesota Timberwolves. Webster had a second back surgery in September 2011 and played 47 games during the 2011-12 season.
During the 2013-14 season, Webster averaged 9.7 points and 2.8 rebounds while shooting 39.2 percent from 3-point range, playing 78 games, including 13 starts, for the Wizards. With starting small forward Trevor Ariza, an unrestricted free agent the team is trying to re-sign, and rookie Otto Porter waiting in the wings, there is a logjam at Webster's position. Free agency will begin July 1, and Ariza's chances of staying with the Wizards are about 50-50.
A native of Seattle, Wash., Webster was drafted in 2005 out of Seattle Prep as one of the last players to come directly from high school into the NBA. In July 2013, Webster signed a four-year, $22 million extension with Washington.