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Samuel Dalembert injury: Mavs center sprains shoulder, leaves game against Cavs

Dallas Mavericks center Sam Dalembert won't return after injuring himself on Monday.

Christian Petersen

Center Samuel Dalembert left the Dallas Mavericks' game against the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday with a left shoulder sprain, and the team announced he will not return. The Mavs center played 14 minutes in the contest and recorded two blocks and three rebounds before injuring himself in the third quarter on a block attempt.

Dallas will turn to backup big men DeJuan Blair and Brandan Wright to fill in for Dalembert, the shot-blocking center who is averaging 6.3 points, 6.3 rebounds and 1.1 blocks per game this season.

Dalembert was signed this offseason in the hopes he could replicate Tyson Chandler's role with Rick Carlisle's championship team from a few years ago, but it hasn't gone smoothly.

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Inconsistent play has led to inconsistent minutes. The center was benched completely on Dec. 14 in the Mavs' game against the Milwaukee Bucks and then was suspended on Jan. 5 when he was late to a practice. He is averaging 20.4 minutes per game.

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