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Frustrated Atkins Gets His First Start
By Ivan Carter
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, December 14, 2005; Page E09
Chucky Atkins replaced the injured Gilbert Arenas in the Washington Wizards' starting lineup last night. The decision to sit Arenas gave Atkins, who has expressed frustration over his role for several weeks, his first start of the season. Atkins, who entered last night's game averaging 5.6 points and 2.2 assists in 16.6 minutes, had 12 points and nine assists in 45 minutes.
Fluctuation in his playing time has bothered Atkins, who did not get off the bench against Toronto and Indiana last week but played 32 minutes, at the time a season high, in Sunday's overtime loss at Miami.
"I like D.C. and this organization but I'm also in a situation where I'm in the last year of my contract and I need some kind of consistency," Atkins said before last night's game. He was acquired in a trade this past summer from the Lakers along with Caron Butler for Kwame Brown. "I need to know that I'm going to play 20 to 24 minutes. I need to know that. Right now, I don't know that for sure. I'm not saying that I have to be traded but I do need to know that I'm going to have a consistent role on this team."
Players that were acquired last summer are eligible to be traded starting tomorrow. According to a source close to Atkins as well as a team source, the Wizards have discussed a trade that would send Atkins and fourth-year forward Jared Jeffries to the New York Knicks in exchange for swingman Quentin Richardson. Atkins played under Knicks Coach Larry Brown in Detroit and, according to several reports, the Knicks are in the market for a defensive-minded small forward.