at Cleveland

Saturday, 1


WWRC-1260 Jared Jeffries missed last night's game against the Orlando Magic after suffering a broken nose in the fourth quarter of the Washington Wizards' 103-93 loss to the Heat on Tuesday night in Miami. Jeffries said he expects to play in Cleveland on Saturday, after he gets a protective mask. "It's not real painful right now, but as soon as I get a mask, I'm going to go ahead and go with it," said Jeffries, who is averaging 3.5 points and 3.8 rebounds.

Jeffries was injured while battling for a rebound, getting elbowed by Heat reserve center Michael Doleac. Jeffries said he knew immediately that it was broken. "You get hit in the nose a lot, but when you get hit and feel that crack, you know," he said.

Jeffries broke his nose in high school and said he played without any protection. "I didn't wear a mask in Indiana," he said. "They didn't know nothing about no masks. Plus, everybody I was playing with was real little." . . .

Coach Eddie Jordan said he would consider playing veteran guard Anthony Peeler more after he played a season-high 17 minutes and scored a season-high 13 points on 6-of-8 shooting during Tuesday's loss in Miami. Peeler said he will accept whatever opportunity he is given. "I'm not here to be the main focus or anything," he said. "I just want to come in and keep everybody positive, that's the main thing." . . .

Magic forward and Reston native Grant Hill, back playing on a surgically repaired left ankle, was in the same stall and locker room where he played his final game prior to this season, on Jan. 16, 2003. Hill said he knew prior to that game that his left foot was broken but he wanted to play against the then-retiring Michael Jordan.

"I just wanted to go one last time and I figured he wouldn't play again," Hill said. "Him realizing I was hurting, he kind of went at me." Jordan scored 20 of his 32 points in the first quarter against Hill.

-- Michael Lee