As the D-League looks to build upon and embrace its role as the official minor league system of the NBA, it will certainly look to capitalize on the various ways to aid squads in The Association.
Of course, developing existent talents, as well as discovering new ones, stand as the two major advantages to using the D-League. However, now that franchises also hold the option to have their players rehab with the affiliates as well, perhaps the league is looking forward to hosting some more notable players than just your everyday NBA hopeful.
A recent article published on the D-League's official website helps fans look ahead to the great things surely to take place in the minors next season. In addition to hosting some exciting matchups featuring some of the NBA's best up and coming talent, the NBADL certainly wouldn't mind also hosting a more polished player or two, should they choose to log some minutes down at their team's affiliate as part of a rehab assignment.
With former number one draft pick John Wall likely to be sidelined through sometime in December (at least) with a knee injury, there could very well be a long road ahead in terms of getting back to game shape, not just for him, but for other NBA veterans poised to come back from devastating and/or long-term injuries.
Last season, the Wizards emerged as one of the NBA squads to most effectively utilize the D-League last season. After calling up three different players for stints in Washington, and also sending another young talent down to their affiliate to gain some experience, there's no doubt the team understands all too well the benefits to using their respective minor league affiliate.
In in the interest of not rushing a player of Wall's caliber back to the hardwood too soon, perhaps giving him the opportunity to use the NBADL as his tool to re-adjust to the tempo of the NBA would be a benefit. When it comes to long-term injuries, slowly but surely is often the best way to ensure a player comes back at 100%.
Given their prior experience with the D-League, maybe there's potential for the Wizards to sell Wall on a stint there after all.
At the very least, the chance for NBA teams and their rehabbing players to explore such an opportunity is there as of now.