DALLAS – Dirk Nowitzki likes the “athleticism’’ backup center Brandan Wright brings to the court.
Normally the third-string center for the Dallas Mavericks, Wright had his most efficient game of the season Saturday when he had 14 points, six rebounds and seven blocks in a 101-99 overtime win over the Houston Rockets. His performance has been a welcomed sight by the Mavs, whose starting center, Brendan Haywood, has missed the past five games with a sprained right knee.
“There’s sometimes you think he’s got no shot to getting that ball, but one quick step and he basically has his elbow above the rim,’’ Nowitzki said. “He’s a good rebounder, and offensively he’s got that little half-roll.
“He’s got a great touch, he’s a little lefty, and has either a floater or a little jump shot in the lane. He’s quick on his feet. He’s quick off his feet.’’
Coach Rick Carlisle was more pleased with Wright's performance against the Rockets than the way he
played Friday night against the San Antonio Spurs. In that game Wright collected eight points, nkine rebounds and one blocked shot in 20 minutes.
"He bounced back (Saturday), because (Friday) night he didn't have a great night,'' Carlisle
said. "He played some minutes (Friday) night, but didn't have much impact.
"He was terrific (Saturday) -- really moving from the moment he stepped on the court. He was a
factor on both ends of the court and hit some big shots and made big plays.''
-- Dwain Price
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