Washington Caron Butler is not ready to write off the season.
The Washington Wizards' All-Star forward said Monday he hopes to have the cast removed from his broken right hand in a week and thinks he could play if the team reached the second round of the playoffs.
His recovery time was supposed to be six weeks after he broke a bone in his hand two weeks ago.
"There's definitely a chance," Butler said. "I'm trying to get my cast off probably as early as next Monday. So the second round - that's what we're looking at."
The Wizards (40-40) have clinched a playoff berth.
Butler took part in practice Monday, using only his left hand to make passes to DeShawn Stevenson or to hoist jump shots. Butler had what he called a "bone-healing machine" attached to his right hand, a contraption he said that "sends waves to the bone and helps it heal faster."
He was injured when he hit his hand on the backboard while trying to block a shot during a win over Milwaukee on April 1. Since then, Washington is 1-7; two games after Butler got hurt, All-Star guard Gilbert Arenas tore his left knee and needed surgery.
Butler was averaging career highs in points (19.1), rebounds (7.4) and assists (3.7).