SAN FRANCISCO — With their team hopeful to bounce back from one of its most disappointing showings, two of the projected top contributors for the Dallas Mavericks coming into the season showed signs of nearing returns from their respective injuries.
Taking the court with big man Brandan Wright (fractured left shoulder) and combo guard Devin Harris (toe surgery) both full participants during Tuesday’s team practice in San Francisco, the Mavericks (13-9) looked to spit out the sourness of their 112-97 defeat in Sacramento the night prior. Still, after Mavs coach Rick Carlisle ruled both Wright and Harris out for Wednesday’s showdown against the Golden State Warriors, neither will be able to step into action immediately in order to help the Dallas team complete its road trip on a positive note.
“Brandan is going live. He’s full board,” Carlisle said as Wright is expected to return sooner than Harris. “You know, Devin is working into the live stuff, and he did quite a bit of it today. So, that’s good, and we’ve just got to keep going. When they’re ready, they’ll be ready. Neither one of them are playing tomorrow.”
Wright has been sidelined since sustaining a small, non-displaced fracture in his left shoulder after leading the Mavericks with 14 points against New Orleans in the preseason opener on Oct. 7. And after going through his first full-contact practice last Friday, the 6-foot-10 big man could return to game action as soon as Saturday, when the Mavs return home to host the Milwaukee Bucks.
As for Harris, it could be longer for the cat-quick guard to return to competitive play after experiencing swelling around his surgically-repaired toe last week. And despite going through the bulk of the Mavs’ workload Tuesday, the nine-year veteran says he’s not going to rush back too soon.
“It feels good to just get back out there and get back the activity,” Harris said. “I had a slight setback last week with some swelling and stuff, so I’m just trying to gauge that. But it was good practicing again. Speed is to me livelihood, being able to create havoc and do things I need to do. It’s hard and it’s been frustrating, but it’s a process and I’ve just got to stay with it. … It’s been hard, because you want to get out there and I know I can help. But I want to be out there for a complete stretch and not in and out. I kind of did that last year, so the important thing is just getting back to 100 percent so I can be out there for the majority of the time.
“I’m getting there. I would say a couple of weeks ago I felt a lot closer, but obviously we’ve got to manage it to see where the swelling is coming from and gauge it. Hopefully, it’s an early Christmas present but not a New Year’s resolution. I’m sticking with that.”
Note: The Mavericks will now conclude their tough road stretch in Oakland for a second showdown of the season against the Golden State Warriors. The Mavs lead the season series 1-0 after a 103-99 home win on Nov. 27. The game will air locally on Fox Sports Southwest at 9:30 p.m. CT.
The Mavs return to American Airlines Center on Saturday, Dec. 14, against O.J. Mayo and the Milwaukee Bucks. The Mavs lead the season series 1-0 after a 91-83 victory in Milwaukee back on Nov. 9. The game will air locally on Fox Sports Southwest at 7:30 p.m. CT. Tickets are still available and can be purchased by calling (214) 747-MAVS (6287) or by visiting Mavs.