Mavericks will be without Shawn Marion for 3 games
DALLAS, Nov 07, 2012 (Menafn - Fort Worth Star-Telegram - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --The injury bug took another big bite out of the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday when forward Shawn Marion learned that he'll be sidelined for at least three games with a sprained left medial collateral ligament.
While Marion noted that the injury is "minor," he'll miss tonight's 7:30 game against Toronto at American Airlines Center. He also will remain in Dallas when the Mavericks play at the New York Knicks on Friday and at the Charlotte Bobcats on Saturday.
Marion's injury occurred midway through the third quarter of Monday's 114-91 victory over Portland when his knee buckled after teammate Elton Brand inadvertently fell on the 14-year veteran while Marion was attempting a jump shot.
"I thought it was OK, but when I sat down that [knee] really started hurting," Marion said. "When I started walking back to the locker room it started hurting even more so, so I knew it was something. It didn't feel right."
The durable Marion, who has missed only 12 games over the past three seasons, is the Mavs' best defender. With the Mavs also without forward Dirk Nowitzki (knee surgery), this puts an even greater strain on a Mavs' frontline that has been getting hammered on the boards.
"It'll affect us a lot," Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said. "He's really our best player right now with Dirk out, so now we've got our two best players out, so it's going to be challenging.
"We've got to step it up and do it collectively with high intensity and playing our game. It's not easy."
Carlisle said he will likely start rookie Jae Crowder or veteran Dahntay Jones until Marion returns. Guard Rodrigue Beaubois could also affect the rotation, but he's a game-time decision after missing the past two games with a sprained left ankle.
Crowder, who was impressive during preseason, said he's prepared for whatever assignment his is given.
"The older guys told me just to be ready because [being a starter] could happen right now with [Marion] not knowing how long he's going to be out," Crowder said. "Of course playing with these older guys, that helped me out so much, and I feel comfortable playing with those guys on the court. So whatever gets thrown at me I'm pretty much prepared."
Crowder won over Carlisle again after he scored nine points in only 14 minutes against the Trail Blazers.
"I thought a real bright spot [Monday] night was the fact that he didn't play at all in the first half and was 100 percent ready to go when his name was called in the second half," Carlisle said. "A lot of times rookies in those situations, they'll kind of shut down mentally if they miss a rotation for whatever reason. He was just as ready as he's ever been, and that's a great sign."
Normally, Vince Carter would a prime candidate to replace Marion. However, Carlisle doesn't want to start the 35-year-old veteran and run up his minutes.
"If need be I'll do whatever needs to be done, of course," Carter said. "But this is an opportunity for [Crowder], and more minutes for Dahntay Jones as well."
Marion averaged eight points, a team-high nine rebounds and shot 51.9 percent from the field in 27 minutes per game in the first four games. Marion, 34, willhave his knee re-examined next week.
"It's a little minor thing to deal with, I'll treat it and take one day at a time," he said. "It's very frustrating. "I hate being on the side watching. I'd rather be out there playing on the floor, but its part of it and it's something you've got to deal with."
Dwain Price, 817-390-7760
___ (c)2012 the Fort Worth Star-Telegram Visit the Fort Worth Star-Telegram at
www.star-telegram.com Distributed by MCT Information Services
Copyright (C) 2012, Fort Worth Star-Telegram