Injuries force Vince Carter to play power forward

Posted Sunday, Oct. 21, 2012  comments  Print Reprints
Hornets at Mavericks

7:30 tonight, American Airlines Center, Dallas

TV: KTXA/Ch. 21

Radio: ESPN/103.3 FM

Records: Hornets 3-2, Mavericks 2-3

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

DALLAS -- In the Dallas Mavericks' locker room following Saturday's 110-94 loss to the Atlanta Hawks, Vince Carter looked exasperated.

A shooting guard and small forward by trade, Carter has been thrust into helping the short-handed Mavs at power forward.

Carter said he doesn't mind the extra workload.

"It takes a toll on your body, but I told them I'm willing to do whatever," Carter said. "We're low on bodies down there and I'm not afraid to fight with the bigs down there and compete.

"I might not get the rebound every time, but whoever the big is in the game I might can help them. I just want to set the tone and the mentality of just fighting and competing."

With arthroscopic right knee surgery shelving Dirk Nowitzki for six weeks, and with Chris Kaman slowed first by a sprained lower back and now with a strained right calf, coach Rick Carlisle turned to Carter.

"He was playing it relatively early in training camp because Kaman missed some time and we didn't have a ton of big guys," Carlisle said. "He's doing the best job he can out there."

At 6-foot-6 and 220 pounds, Carter has to battle against some of the game's top bruisers. And the Mavs' oldest player bulked up over the off-season to prepare himself for this challenge.

"I'm dying out there sometimes," said Carter, who turns 36 in January. "More than anything, I may play the position and I'm undersized, but I'm just trying to compete and just give it all I have and set the tone for these other guys.

"If the oldest guy can do it, I know for sure y'all [younger players] can do it, probably at a higher level."

Taking pity

Guard O.J. Mayo thinks Dirk Nowitzki's absence for the next six weeks could be a blessing in disguise.

For one, Nowitzki will rehab his surgically repaired right knee and it's hoped that won't be an issue once he returns. Mayo also believes opponents will take note.

"We'll probably get some teams that'll maybe take it a little easy on us with Dirk not playing," Mayo said. "But the Dallas Mavericks have been good for so many years, the name on the jersey will probably bring out a lot of the respect and have teams come at us hard.

"We just have to stay focused and understand and take it a game at a time, a day at a time, and just keep getting better."

Mavs host Hornets

The Mavs will play their fifth straight preseason game without Dirk Nowitzki at 7:30 tonight when they host the New Orleans Hornets at American Airlines Center.

Without Nowitzki, the Mavs must limit their mistakes just to stay in games.

"We can't take any days off at practice and we can't take any possessions off in games," Rick Carlisle said. "Everything's meaningful. When you lose a guy like that, margins for error become slimmer. I think the guys really understand that."

Mixed results

Mavs guard Rodrigue Beaubois returned to the lineup with mixed results Saturday after missing three games with a sprained left ankle.

The fourth-year guard had three points, two rebounds, four assists and two turnovers against the Hawks in 17 minutes. He also was just 1 of 5 from the field, including 1 of 4 from 3-point range.

The positive news is that Beaubois felt no ill effects in his left ankle after Saturday's game.

"I'm not 100 percent yet, but I'm getting closer," Beaubois said.

Dwain Price, 817-390-7760

Twitter: @DwainPrice

Looking for comments?

We welcome your comments on this story, but please be civil. Do not use profanity, hate speech, threats, personal abuse, images, internet links or any device to draw undue attention. Our policy requires those wishing to post here to use their real identity.

Our commenting policy | Facebook commenting FAQ | Why Facebook?

Wednesday, August 27Full Scoreboard
St. Louis1Final | Box
Pittsburgh «3
Texas «12Final | Box
Tampa Bay1Top 1st | Box
Baltimore0@theBallpark | TV: Sun Sports, MASN 2
Washington0Delayed | Box
Philadelphia0@theBallpark | TV: MASN, CSN-PHI
Boston0Bottom 1st | Box
Toronto1@theBallpark | TV: NESN, SNET
NY Yankees0Top 1st | Box
Detroit0@theBallpark | TV: YES, FSN-DET
Chicago Cubs0Bottom 1st | Box
Cincinnati0@theBallpark | TV: CSN-CHI, FSN-OH
Atlanta1Bottom 1st | Box
NY Mets0@theBallpark | TV: SPSO, WPIX
Cleveland 8/27 8:10 PM ET
Chicago WSox TV: STO, WCIU
Oakland 8/27 8:10 PM ET
Minnesota 8/27 8:10 PM ET
Kansas City TV: FSN-N, FSN-KC
Milwaukee 8/27 9:10 PM ET
San Diego TV: FSN-WI, FSN-SD
Los Angeles 8/27 9:40 PM ET
Arizona TV: SportsNet LA, FSN-AZ
Miami 8/27 10:05 PM ET
LA Angels TV: FSN-W
Colorado 8/27 10:15 PM ET
San Francisco TV: ROOT-RM, CSN-BA
Full Scoreboard
Wednesday, August 27Full Scoreboard
No games today
Full Scoreboard
Week 5Full Scoreboard
Atlanta 6:00 PM ET
Jacksonville TV: CW69, WUPA
Detroit 7:00 PM ET
Buffalo TV: WXYZ7, WKBW
Indianapolis 7:00 PM ET
Cincinnati TV: WNDY, CBS12
Kansas City 7:00 PM ET
Green Bay TV: NBC, KCTV
St. Louis 7:00 PM ET
Miami TV: CBS4
NY Jets 7:00 PM ET
Philadelphia TV: NFL Network, CBS2, 6ABC
New England 7:30 PM ET
NY Giants TV: WBZ
Carolina 7:30 PM ET
Pittsburgh TV: Panthers TV, KDKA, CBS2
Washington 7:30 PM ET
Tampa Bay TV: NBC4, CSN-DC, WFLA
Chicago 8:00 PM ET
Cleveland TV: FOX32, WKYC
Denver 8:00 PM ET
Dallas TV: KUSA, KTVT, CBS11
San Francisco 8:00 PM ET
Houston TV: KPIX 5, KTRK
Baltimore 8:00 PM ET
New Orleans TV: WBAL, CST
Minnesota 8:00 PM ET
Tennessee TV: KARE 11, WKRN
Seattle 10:00 PM ET
Oakland TV: NFL Network, Q13FOX, KTVU
Arizona 10:00 PM ET
San Diego TV: ABC-15, KFMB
Full Scoreboard
Wednesday, August 27Full Scoreboard
No games today
Full Scoreboard