- The Washington Times - Friday, February 28, 2003

Seen and heard last night at MCI Center:

MAKING THE TRIP WITH EWING Wizards assistant Patrick Ewing, regarded by many as the greatest New York Knicks player of all time, will get his just due tonight when he has his No. 33 retired at Madison Square Garden.

Ewing is said to be taking a huge contingent with him from the Washington area. Expected to be there are Wizards teammates Michael Jordan and Charles Oakley, the team's coaching staff, former Georgetown coach John Thompson and former Hoyas teammate and present New Jersey Net Dikembe Mutombo.

Said Ewing: "I'm looking forward to this. It's very special to me, having my number retired and having so many people around me who have played an important role in my career. I'm just thankful that I had the chance to play for this organization and so many good things happened to me."

SIZING UP YAO With Etan Thomas injured and newly activated Jahidi White in no shape to contribute after missing the entire season, Wizards coach Doug Collins wondered before the game how to handle 7-foot-5 Houston center Yao Ming.

"If Brendan [Haywood] gets a couple of fouls, I don't know who I have with any size to play up against Yao," Collins lamented. "Everybody else is going to come to his shoulders. If you guys haven't seen him play before, you guys are going to be shocked. He makes Brendan look like a little kid. He's big, and he's proportioned, too. He's got strong, powerful legs. He's not some stringbean guy. This guy is some physical specimen."

THROWBACK FEVER Almost every game, it seems, one of the Wizards arrives wearing a throwback jersey. This time Juan Dixon took a spin in Wilt Chamberlain's No. 13 with the Los Angeles Lakers.

John N. Mitchell

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