Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Afflalo Has To Be Forced To Rest

UCLA sophomore guard Arron Afflalo was like an 8-year-old waking up early on Christmas morning to find a tree full of presents, only to be told he couldn't open them until after dinner.

He stepped off the team bus on UCLA's campus Saturday night, and in front of him was Pauley Pavilion.

But hours before, after the Bruins won at Oregon State despite Afflalo's seventh straight subpar shooting game, Bruins coach Ben Howland gave Afflalo a mandated two-day break.

The belief is Afflalo's shooting woes are linked to fatigue, something he is experiencing because of his dual role as scorer and defensive stalwart.

"I saw the open gym, and it looked appetizing," Afflalo said. "The lights were bright and everything. I'm a dedicated basketball player, but I've gotta respect my coach's wishes. He only wants the best for me."

Afflalo had an individual workout under Howland's watchful eye Tuesday morning, and then took part in UCLA's afternoon practice. He said his legs felt more fresh, which he hopes translates into better shooting. L.A. Daily News

(photo credit: AP)


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