Wilcox sits vs. RocketsChris Wilcox was the odd-man out Friday night. With Nenad Krstic now part of the rotation, Thunder coach Scott Brooks faces some tough decisions. Sitting Wilcox, who averages 5.4 rebounds and 9.2 points, was a curious decision.
"You can’t play six bigs,” said Brooks. "Unfortunately, that’s the way the game is. I understand the situation is tough for guys who don’t get to play. That’s my decision. They have to continue to be professional about it. And Weezy (Wilcox) has been.” Will Wilcox sit again tonight against Chicago? "We’ll see how the game is going,” Brooks said. "But I like what our bigs did tonight. We anticipate them playing as well (against the Bulls).”
OBSERVERSDesmond Mason, who started the previous eight games, did not dress. Mason suffered a lower back contusion after taking a charging foul Wednesday night in Minnesota. Mason tested his back for 45 minutes during pre-game but decided he couldn’t go full speed. Nick Collison, who returned Wednesday after essentially missing eight games with a fractured thumb, replaced Mason in the starting lineup. Houston played without Ron Artest (ankle) and Brent Barry (personal reasons).
ATKINS UPDATEBrooks said point guard Chucky Atkins might make his Thunder debut as early as tonight. Atkins, acquired in a trade from Denver on Wednesday, is a nine-year NBA veteran. "He picks things up pretty quickly,” Brooks said.