DALLAS -- With centers Brendan Haywood (ankle) and Brandan Wright (concussion) sidelined with injuries, Ian Mahinmi has suddenly found himself the center of attention for the Dallas Mavericks.
And the third-year veteran responded in Tuesday's 95-85 win over the New York Knicks with nine points, six rebounds, three steals and two blocks in 27 minutes. It was one of those comforting performances coach Rick Carlisle likes to see whenever he puts Mahinmi in the game.
"Mahinmi was terrific (and) very active,'' Carlisle said. "Seemed like he was always coming up with a key rebound or a key defensive play, and he made key buckets.
"There were times when he would do something that would lead to a little momentum for us.''
A flying dunk by Mahinmi came in the midst of a 14-1 run that increased the Mavs' lead to 66-47 midway through the third period.The 6-11 center kept attacking the basket while going against former teammate Tyson Chandler, who finished with six points and eight rebounds.
"We obviously need him,'' Carlisle said of Mahinmi. "The backup situation is a little bit of a coin toss right now.
"We've got different things we can do depending on who we're playing and matchups.''
-- Dwain Price
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