- The Washington Times - Sunday, March 25, 2007

The bad news is that Washington won’t see the return of All-Star forward Caron Butler to the lineup until the team returns home to face Philadelphia on Wednesday.

The good news is that Darius Songaila is starting to make an impact, and judging by the minutes Wizards coach Eddie Jordan has been playing him nightly on the road trip, Songaila’s health is not a concern.

In the Wizards’ 135-128 loss at Golden State on Friday, Songaila — one of seven Washington players to score in double figures — posted season highs in points (17) and assists (five) and matched his season high with six rebounds.

Perhaps of more importance though, was the fact that Jordan used Songaila extensively for the second game in a row. Songaila logged 30-plus minutes in both games.

“He is very solid out there. He scores on the post and from the outside,” Jordan said. “He makes good passes, and plays different positions. He’s a guy that is difficult to take off the floor.”

Since rejoining the team after missing the first 45 games following surgery on a herniated disk in his lower back, Songaila has made incremental progress. He had appeared in 22 games going into last night’s game with the Clippers. He has five double-digit performances in that time, with four of them coming in the last five games.

Over that same span of games Songaila has made 26 of 35 field goals.

Back-to-backs still a problem

The Wizards entered last night’s game with the Clippers with the odds stacked against them, mostly because they continue to be horrible in the second game of a back-to-back set.

Despite beating Seattle after falling to Portland the night before, Washington was just 5-12 in those games.

Last night’s game was the Wizards’ fourth in five nights.

Law of averages catches up

Before their loss at Golden State, the Wizards were 14-0 on the season in games that they had made at least half of their field goals.

The Wizards connected on 48 of 90 field goals against the Warriors (.533), but it wasn’t good enough to prevent them from losing the game.

A positive to come out of the loss at Golden State was the lively play of the bench, which posted a season-high 50 points. The previous high: 48.


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