Dallas Mavericks: centers
The Mavericks head coach said before Tuesday's game against the Portland Trail Blazers that backup center Chris Kaman suffered a concussion in Monday's practice at the Rose Garden and is out indefinitely. Kaman is coming off a season-low 11 minutes in Sunday's 110-95 win over Phoenix after Carlisle turned to rookie Bernard James, the third center to start for Dallas in the last three games.
"It helps to have depth for sure," Carlisle said. "We need all those guys, but this is a hit for us. Chris has played very well for us this year, played really well against these guys last time. We'll miss him, and hopefully he'll be back soon."
Carlisle said Kaman, who's averaging 12.4 points and 6.2 rebounds per game, sustained the injury when he collided with another player during practice and hit his head on the floor. Kaman will have to pass league-mandated baseline tests before returning to action, Carlisle said.
"He'll be back when his symptoms abate," he said. "We don't know a timetable for it. We don't think it's that serious, but with these things you have to be very careful."
Carlisle didn't say who would start at center against Portland. James, Elton Brand and Brandan Wright will all presumably receive increased minutes. Carlisle said Shawn Marion could also see time at the five when they go to a smaller lineup.
"We have three guys in the mix. ... A big part of our team success is our balance," he said.
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