- The Washington Times - Sunday, March 14, 2004

Seen and heard last night at MCI Center:

I WAS DONE AT THE TIME — Wizards guard Jerry Stackhouse said the way his leg felt two weeks ago was the reason he declared his season was over. On Friday in Atlanta, Stackhouse returned to the lineup after missing six games while rehabbing his right leg. He has played in just 13 games this season.

Against the Hawks, Stackhouse played 41 minutes, scored 29 points on 11 of 26 shooting, and added six rebounds and six assists. But he noted that playing 41 minutes in a late-season comeback attempt was probably not the smartest thing to do and that those extended minutes were not his decision.

“I don’t know if it was necessarily smart to start right back out playing 40 minutes,” Stackhouse said. “I don’t feel bad, [but] I was really tired during the game. If I have to do it myself, I’m going to try to monitor [it] — take myself out, make sure I get some breaks. I don’t want to break down in 12 games again. It makes no sense. Coming right back off a long break and jumping in and playing 40 minutes, [it’s] headed in that direction.”

KWAME FOR CHRISTIAN — Forward Kwame Brown returned to the starting lineup after missing the last two games with a sprained left ankle. Brown replaced 11-year veteran Christian Laettner.

YOUNG BIG MEN — Wizards coach Eddie Jordan believes his team is set at the post position with 7-footer Brendan Haywood and the 6-foot-11 Brown, although many observers think the jury is still out on Jordan’s young towers.

“They’ve had a real good, I don’t know, five weeks there and it’s tapered off a little bit now, but that’s probably part of youth coming down to the last part of the season,” Jordan said. “You’d like to see a little bit more, a little bit quicker, but that’s the way it is. We’re very pleased with their growth.”

Before the game, Haywood, 25, was averaging 7.1 points and 4.8 rebounds. Brown, 22, was averaging 10.5 points and 7.2 rebounds.

Ken Wright

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