- The Washington Times - Tuesday, December 11, 2001

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) Chris Webber had a difficult time trying to calm down before his return to the court.

"I was very nervous at home all day," Webber said "I kept pacing. I didn't know how I'd react. I've been waiting for the moment to hear the fans cheer again."

Webber scored 18 points in 28 minutes in his first game with the Sacramento Kings this season, a 95-88 victory over the Miami Heat on Sunday night.

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Webber didn't have to wait long to hear the crowd. He received a standing ovation when his name was announced with Sacramento's starters.

"Just walking on the court was the best feeling tonight," said Webber, who missed the Kings' first 20 games with a sprained right ankle. "It feels like I'm on training wheels again."

Webber was activated from the injured list before the game, and scored 14 of his 18 points in the second half to help lead the Kings to their third straight win and sixth in seven games.

"I tried to rush back. I wanted to play against San Antonio [Nov. 30]," Webber said. "I was at Coach's coattails to get in. But he said there was no need to rush back because the team was playing so well."

Peja Stojakovic scored 23 points, Doug Christie barely missed his first double-double of the season with 18 points and nine rebounds, and Hedo Turkoglu added 15 points for the Kings, who made a season-high 30 free throws.

"It feels good to have Chris back," Kings center Vlade Divac said. "We're a better team with him."

Jim Jackson, in his third game with the Heat after signing as a free agent on Dec. 2, had a double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds as Miami lost for the 13th time in 14 games.

Webber, played nearly eight minutes in his first stint on the court, going 2-for-4 from the floor with three rebounds and an assist. Webber was limited to nine minutes in the first half due to foul trouble.

"He was so excited to play, he got out of sync there in the first half," Kings coach Rick Adelman said. "It was nice to have him back, and he's just going to get better the more he plays."

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