"It’s awesome that the state has a pro team now,” Azubuike said. "I’m just trying to get better and better, be aggressive and become a more complete player each year. I’m working on becoming a passer and play better defense.”
Veteran forward Nick Collison
posted his third double-double (15 points, 10 rebounds) this season after nearly having a double-double (14 points, eight rebounds) the previous game at Miami.
"My anticipation is getting better,” Collison said. "I’m able to move quicker, anticipate when the ball is coming off (the rim) and where it’s going to go. As the season goes on you find a little bit of a rhythm.”
was in uniform Monday night but did not play as he continues to recover from a sore thigh. ... Johan Petro
is battling a bruised left hand and was icing it before the game. ... Chris Wilcox
played without a bulky knee brace for the first time since returning to the lineup in mid-November after a five-game absence. Wilcox, however, did wear a smaller brace. ... Wilcox had a solid game by avoiding foul trouble. He fouled out at Charlotte in only 24 minutes, picked up two quick fouls at Orlando and was limited to 23 minutes at Miami with four fouls.
BY MIKE BALDWIN AND DARNELL MAYBERRY