Chris Wilcox, after missing every preseason game with a back strain, is finally getting the chance to stretch out.

Last night, the big forward's six-point second quarter was credited by Doc Rivers as an early turnaround point in the 100-94 overtime win over Washington at the Garden.

Kevin Garnett, for one, was moved by the presence of Wilcox, who like Jeff Green is making a comeback from heart surgery.

"For he and Jeff, being on that journey, it's inspirational, to be honest, to see someone still get a chance to still do something that they love and do it passionately is great," said Garnett.

Said Wilcox: "That's what they've told me before games. We need you to bring energy. Just play hard, and great things happen. If you stay ready, then you don't have to get ready.

"I'm trying to get back to where I was, but things like this are motivation for me to keep going and keep going."