Mavericks' Vince Carter returns

Updated: January 27, 2012, 11:39 PM ET
By Tim MacMahon | ESPNDallas.com

DALLAS -- Dallas Mavericks swingman Vince Carter returned after a five-game absence and had 12 points off the bench in the Mavs' 116-101 win over the Utah Jazz on Friday night.

Dallas, however, was without guard Delonte West, who sat out with a tight hamstring.

West, who averages 7.9 points and is considered the Mavs' best perimeter defender, said he plans to play Sunday against the San Antonio Spurs.

Rodrigue Beaubois, who came in averaging 6.2 points in 14.3 minutes a game, started in place of West and scored a season-high 22 points on 9-of-15 shooting. It was his first start of the season and first since April 11.

Carter was an option to start, but coach Rick Carlisle rewarded Beaubois for his improved play of late, which included a 17-point effort last week in Salt Lake City that allowed Dallas to get past the Jazz.

Carter, an eight-time All-Star who has averaged 9.5 points for the Mavericks, practiced Thursday for the first time since spraining his left foot while attempting a would-be game-tying 3-pointer in the Mavericks' Jan. 16 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers. He participated in the morning shootaround without any problems and was cleared to play.

Tim MacMahon covers the Mavericks for ESPNDallas.com.

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