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Dallas Mavericks center Dereck Lively II might have to miss the remainder of the regular season, according to coach Jason Kidd.

After not playing in the second half of the Mavericks' 125-07 win against the Houston Rockets on Sunday, Lively was ruled out of Tuesday's game against the Golden State Warriors with right knee soreness. Before the Mavericks' 104-100 loss at Chase Center, Kidd called the injury a knee sprain, via Dallas Basketball's Grant Afseth.

Asked if there was anything concerning about the injury beyond his status for Tuesday's game, Kidd told reporters: "Concern? I don't know if the right word is 'concern.' It could be two weeks where he could be out, but we'll see how he feels. We'll take it day by day. But hopefully, he's back sooner than later."

Mavericks general manager Nico Harrison told the Dallas Morning News' Brad Townsend that Lively would be evaluated in Dallas on Wednesday and an official diagnosis would follow. The regular season ends on April 14, so, if he indeed has to miss two weeks, he won't be able to return until the postseason.

Lively, the No. 12 pick in the 2023 draft, was the Mavs' starting center for most of his rookie season. For their past 13 games, though, Daniel Gafford has been in the starting lineup, with Lively serving as the backup until this injury. Against the Warriors, Kidd put veteran big man Dwight Powell back in the rotation, but only used him for a total of eight minutes in two first-half stints. Dallas closed the first half with Maxi Kleber at the 5 spot, and, when Gafford went to the bench in the second half, Kleber was once again the man in the middle.

Kidd called it a "luxury" to be able to use both Kleber and P.J. Washington at the 5 if need be. "It's always good to have depth," Kidd said, noting that he didn't want to "run minutes up" late in the season. One of the reasons that the Mavericks had won 11 of 12 going into the Warriors game, though, was that they were able to put a springy, rim-protecting, lob-catching center on the floor for all 48 minutes. For however long Lively is out, they can't do that.

At 45-30, Dallas is fifth in the West, with an identical record to the sixth-place New Orleans Pelicans. The seventh-place Sacramento Kings and eighth-place Phoenix Suns are one game back in the loss column, and four of these teams have seven games left to play.

The Mavs' remaining schedule: Thursday vs. Atlanta, Friday vs. Golden State, next Monday vs. Houston, at Charlotte (April 9), at Miami (April 10), vs. Detroit (April 12), at Oklahoma City (April 14). The play-in begins on April 16 and the playoffs begin on April 20.

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