Troy Murphy starts; Elton Brand sits

DALLAS -- Troy Murphy replaced Elton Brand in the Mavericks' starting lineup for Wednesday's game against the Knicks.

Brand had started all 11 games he has played for the Mavericks, although he's averaging career lows of 6.2 points and 5.8 rebounds.

The switch represents the continuation of a trend of Murphy getting more minutes at Brand's expense.

Murphy has played 43 minutes in the last two games, compared to 25 minutes for Brand. Murphy has rediscovered his perimeter shooting touch, with all 21 of his points in those two games coming on 3-pointers. He has hit seven of his last 12 3-point attempts after a 3-of-16 start to his Dallas tenure.

"Murphy’s doing what we got him to do," coach Rick Carlisle said after shootaround. "That is to rebound and stretch the floor for us, and he’s probably been our best all-around big defender when you factor in pick-and-roll defense, rebounding, being in the right position, all that kind of stuff. He’s a valuable guy."

The lineup change doesn't help address the Mavs' need for more rebounding. Brand averages 9.3 rebounds per 36 minutes, compared to 7.3 for Murphy.