Salah Mejri sat out Wednesday’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans with right knee soreness. But the Dallas Mavericks’ second-year center doesn’t want anyone be alarmed.
“I don’t think it’s anything major,” Mejri said before the game. “I could have played with it.
“I practiced (Wednesday) morning, but (head athletic trainer) Casey (Smith) and coach (Rick Carlisle) doesn’t want to take the risk. So I’ll treat it today and I hope to be ready to go the next game.”
This is the same knee Mejri had arthroscopic surgery on last June 30. But he said the soreness is “not in the same spot. It’s just a little bit on the side.
“It’s not bad. I’m just taking it easy so we don’t want to make it worse.”
Mejri took a knee to his mid-section in Monday’s loss to Oklahoma City. But he said that wasn’t the play where he got injured.
“Whenever I checked in the game, I tried to jump for a rebound and I twisted my knee a little bit,” Mejri said. “It’s nothing bad, because I kept playing.”
The Mavs believe Mejri will be able to play Friday in Memphis.
“Hopefully it’s just for one game,” Carlisle said. “I think he could (have played Wednesday), but at this point I don’t think it’s something we want to mess with.
“And he’s had such a good year, I’d like to get him 100 percent and get him ready for the (Memphis game).”
Although they haven’t seen him play much, the Mavs have seen enough of Jarrod Uthoff that they signed the 6-foot-9 forward to a multiyear contract on Wednesday.
Also on Wednesday, the Mavs did not offer a contract extension to guard Manny Harris, whose second 10-day contract expired Wednesday. Harris will rejoin the Texas Legends of the NBA D-League.
The Mavs have been impressed with Uthoff, who the team originally signed to a 10-day contract on March 9. Even though the Iowa product has played a total of five minutes in two games, Carlisle harped on the time Uthoff spent playing for the Texas Legends.
“He was playing extremely well in the D-League,” Carlisle said. “We haven’t had a lot of practices, but in individual workouts and talking to him and hearing him talk about the game, he’s got a very good aptitude, and during this period of the last nine games we’ve got to get him out here and look at him a little bit.
“There aren’t a lot of high quality stretch fours in the draft, and so this is an opportunity for us to take a close look.”
Carlisle said he believes Uthoff can add skill to the Mavs’ roster. Undrafted last summer, Uthoff averaged 16.5 points and 8.5 rebounds in two recent games with the Legends.
“There’s a lot of things about his game that are very intriguing,” Carlisle said.