Game 1 at Chicago,
Sunday, 5:30 p.m.
TNT, Comcast SportsNet, WTEM-980
NEW YORK, April 20 -- Following Tuesday night's 109-101 loss at New Jersey, Washington Wizards forward Kwame Brown expressed frustration over the way he has been booed at several home games this season. Heading into Wednesday night's game, Brown was averaging 8.1 points and 5.5 rebounds on the road vs. 5.2 points and 3.0 rebounds at home, and appears to play with more confidence on the road.
Brown intimated that his treatment at MCI center led Coach Eddie Jordan to curb his minutes during the recent homestand. Brown made a case for more minutes with strong performances against the Nets and Knicks. After scoring a total of 20 points in home games against Milwaukee, Chicago, Cleveland and Charlotte, Brown scored 33 points against the Nets and Knicks, including a season-high 19 on 7-of-8 shooting Wednesday night.
After the game, Brown said he's entering the playoffs with a strong feeling of confidence. "I just want the fans to know that I have feelings too," Brown said. "I wasn't lashing out. I never want to battle with the fans. I need their support. I'm just saying, 'Support me.' I need it." . . .
Forward Jared Jeffries was back in the starting lineup one night after suffering a bruised knee. He played only seven minutes against the Nets, but bounced back to score 12 points in 27 minutes against the Knicks. . . .
Center Brendan Haywood was not in uniform (left knee contusion), but will be in the starting lineup when the playoffs open Sunday in Chicago. Haywood missed 10 games after fracturing his left thumb on March 27.
-- Ivan Carter