An MRI on his shoulder revealed a small fracture in his shoulder. An injury like this is never good news, but it could have been much worse. Wright missed the entire 2009-10 season following surgery to the same shoulder, but the MRI thankfully revealed that his previous injury will not have an effect on this current one.
Wright hurt his shoulder sometime during practice on Tuesday. He will wear a sling for at least 10 days, after which he will be re-evaluated. The Mavericks seem to be playing this one fairly close to the chest and haven’t revealed much else, including any sort of timetable for a return, other than the re-evaluation.
As evidenced by his two-year, $10 million deal, Wright is very much a part of the Mavericks’ plans for their rotation this year. Until he returns, it will be on some of the other players to step up.
The main recipient of most of Wright’s minutes will mostly likely be DeJuan Blair. Despite their different playing styles, Blair can fill a similar role to that of Wright, which is a power forward coming off the bench, who can also fill in at center. Blair may not have the knack for scoring the way Wright does, but he is a better defender, and possibly a better rebounder as well.
As is always the case, any injury is an opportunity for another player, and Blair will have a chance to increase his long-term playing time if he can turn some heads with his play. Bernard James could also see an increase in minutes, and even more than Blair, he needs to find a way to make the coaching staff notice him.
There’s never a good time for an injury, but with this one coming early in the preseason, there could definitely be worse times. As long as Wright comes back as healthy as ever, hopefully this will just be a minor setback as he continues to improve and build upon the great start he had in the first preseason game.