Washington Wizards teammates John Wall and Marcin Gortat met privately last week to confront each other about where they stood with one another, league sources tell ESPN.
It was the first time the two spoke in person regarding Gortat’s tweet many interpreted as a passive-aggressive slight directed at the All-Star guard, league sources told ESPN.
Both Wizards players requested the sitdown, sources say.
The meeting, which didn’t last long, facilitated the airing of grievances, but sources say there is still more work to be done to fully repair that relationship.
Those close to the franchise suggest these are natural altercations from the rigors of such an emotional season.
After a 122-119 win over the red-hot Toronto Raptors on Feb. 1, the team’s third consecutive victory with Wall sidelined as he recovers from knee surgery, Gortat tweeted:
Unbelievable win tonight ! Great “team” victory!
— Marcin Gortat🇵🇱 (@MGortat) February 2, 2018
Soon after, Wall, sources say, reached out to Gortat via a text message and essentially stated that if there’s a problem, direct it to him instead of using social media to spew backhanded insults, sources with knowledge of the conversation told ESPN.
Gortat has explained that his tweet was never intended as a jab to Wall, and reiterated that he was genuinely praising the team for a big win.
When ESPN’s Michael Smith asked Wall about Gortat’s tweet on SportCenter, the point guard replied, “It was more just shock to hear it from him, understanding he gets the most assists from me and the most spoon-fed baskets ever.”
The organization may look into enforcing a policy that enables the team to fine players for tweets that could be perceived as being detrimental to the team, sources say.
Wall is expected to return in mid-March.