Nelson and Harkless likely will play against Dallas, but Afflalo won't play

Orlando Sentinel

DALLAS — The Orlando Magic are likely to have 10 players available to play when they face the Dallas Mavericks tonight, but the Magic will go into the game without their leading scorer, Arron Afflalo.

Afflalo didn’t participate in the Magic’s shootaround at American Airlines Center because he has a sore right ankle and right foot.

The Magic received some welcome news regarding point guard Jameer Nelson and small forward Maurice Harkless, however.

Nelson and Harkless went through the shootaround and are likely to play tonight. Nelson has a sore right index finger, while Harkless has a sore right knee. The injuries limited their playing time Saturday night in the Magic’s loss to the Denver Nuggets.

The Mavericks have a few injury issues of their own.

The status of small forward Shawn Marion, who has bruised ribs and a bruised right shoulder, will be decided closer to tipoff. Reserve point guard Shane Larkin, an Orlando native, didn’t go through the Mavericks’ shootaround because he has a sprained right ankle.

Dallas (22-16) is in eighth place in the Western Conference standings.

“They can do it all, and they get it from various people,” Magic coach Jacque Vaughn said. “But it starts with [Monta] Ellis and [Dirk] Nowitzki still. The fact that [Nowitzki] can still put up 40 on a given night is pretty impressive.”

The Magic (10-27) are mired in a season-high losing streak of seven games, and they definitely will be without center Nik Vucevic (concussion) and reserve point guard Ronnie Price (sinus infection).

“It’s an important game for us,” Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said after his team completed its shootaround. “We’ve got to pay attention to detail. We’ve got to respect whoever they throw out here. They’ve got some guys banged up. We know that. . . .

“Tonight, we’ve got to keep their activity guys off the boards, because [we’re] not going to shoot the ball great every night.”

Josh Robbins covers the Orlando Magic and the NBA for the Orlando Sentinel. You can reach him via e-mail at and connect with him on Facebook at Follow him on Twitter at @JoshuaBRobbins.

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