Beal: We have to find a way to finish games
Trevor Ariza could be back sooner than expected from a right hamstring strain, but it still will take a few more games before he is certain of the timetable.
"I'm just happy it's not going to keep me out for a long, long period of time," said Ariza, who fell hard in a loss at the San Antonio Spurs last week, attempted to play through the discomfort and hurt it even more. "It's something if you don't take care of it could get worse. ... Rest, doing my corrective exercises and staying on top of it. Not let a day go by that I'm not doing something."
An MRI showed no significant damage to the the muscle or connective tissues though there was swelling.
The Wizards play the Minnesota Timberwolves at Verizon Center on Tuesday (CSN, 7 p.m. ET). Martell Webster has moved back into the starting lineup as he did last season when Ariza went out with a calf strain.
Even though they're on a four-game losing streak, the Wizards realize the Eastern Conference is still wide open. Only the Indiana Pacers, Miami Heat, Chicago Bulls and Atlanta Hawks have winning records.
Ariza joked about the East being inferior to the Western Conference.
"It's been like that for a while. No disrespect to anybody. That's just the way it is," he said. "We got a chance. We still got a chance."