Bobcats' coach expects Wallace to be practicing by next week

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Charlotte Bobcats forward Gerald Wallace could return from his fourth concussion in four years as soon as next week.

Coach Sam Vincent said Wednesday that Wallace has been doing some light shooting and running over the past couple of days. Vincent expects Wallace will be cleared to practice by the end of the week and said a target date for his return is March 12 at Dallas.

"He's feeling a lot better. The headaches are gone," Vincent said. "I think it's just a matter of him getting the final clearance to get back involved in full contact. From there we'll get him in some practices and let him and see how he responds to that. If he clears that well then we'll get him back to playing."

Wallace, Charlotte's leading scorer at 20.6 points per game, hasn't played since he was knocked unconscious when he was hit in the face with an inadvertent elbow by Sacramento's Mikki Moore on Feb. 22. Wallace was taken off the court on a stretcher and released from the hospital that night.

Wallace experienced amnesia, headaches and drowsiness in the days following the concussion and saw a neurologist last week. He was first seen around the team when he watched from the bench during Sunday's home win over Toronto.

After Saturday's game at Washington, the Bobcats have three days off before visiting Dallas. Vincent said he hopes to have Wallace practice during that period.

"We don't want to rush him on the floor without having proper practice time," Vincent said. "He's got to chase some rust off and get his conditioning and wind."