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Wednesday, April 6, 2005; Page D05


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If he didn't have other obligations, forward Antawn Jamison said he would have been in St. Louis on Monday night so that he could celebrate North Carolina's national championship victory over Illinois. But he already had made plans to come back to the Wizards yesterday. "I still had some champagne last night," the former Tar Heel said with a smile.

The Wizards activated Jamison before they played the Boston Celtics last night. Jamison had missed 12 of the past 14 games with right knee tendinitis, but he felt that it was time to come back. "I feel up to the task. I'm playing without any pain," he said. "I don't feel comfortable playing the last two games or three games of the season and hit the playoffs. I need to get back to game speed. I need to get pushed around for a couple of weeks and see how it feels."

Jamison said the team will limit his minutes the rest of the season and he likely will not play back-to-back games. "I'm sure they're taking the proper precautions," he said.

To make room for Jamison, the Wizards placed guard Anthony Peeler on the injured list with right knee tendinitis. After missing 17 of the past 18 games, the 35-year-old Peeler practiced for the first time in several weeks on Monday but he began to experience swelling in the knee yesterday. "It came when I stopped playing about three weeks or four ago," Peeler said of the injury. "I couldn't take the pain anymore. I couldn't bend my knees." . . .

The Wizards will end up with three nationally televised games this season. In a fight with the Bulls for home-court advantage in the first round of the playoffs, their home game against the Bulls April 13 has been moved to 8 p.m. and will be televised by ESPN. The Wizards will also be on ESPN two days later against the Cleveland Cavaliers. They defeated the SuperSonics, 107-96, on Jan. 6 in a nationally televised game on TNT. . . .

With Jamison returning, Coach Eddie Jordan used his 14th starting lineup last night.

-- Michael Lee

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