When Jason Terry suffered a fractured cheek bone and required surgery there was much anguish circulating about how much time he would miss. Terry suffered the injury on March 3 and was actually back on the floor on March 17 after missing just five games.
There's been little fretting over the oblique muscle strain that Mavericks small forward Shawn Marion suffered to his left side during Saturday's game. It's possible it could keep him out longer than Terry and that would be troubling for an already sputtering Mavericks team locked in a multi-team battle for homecourt advantage and the playoffs on tap in two weeks.
In a tweet Monday night, Marion, the Mavs' best defender all season, said he's "still hurting." And with good reason.
The obliques wrap around the side of the body and an abdominal strain can make it difficult to simply sneeze. Oblique strains are more common in baseball players, obviously due to the twisting motions of both hitters and pitchers. It's not uncommon for a baseball player to miss one or even two months depending on the severity of the injury.
The severity of Marion's oblique muscle strain is unknown, at least to those of us on the outside of the Mavs' training room. The team continues to list him as day-to-day. He did not practice Monday and is not expected to pratice today, leaving his status for Wednesday's important home game against Memphis in doubt.
The Mavs then play three quick road games on Friday, Saturday and Monday, before ending the regular season at home the following Wednesday on April 14.
Perhaps Marion can return quickly and play relatively pain-free. However, rest and time seem to be most needed in dealing with abdominal strains and right now the Mavs have no time to rest.