Fountain of Youth: Time is now for Rodrigue Beaubois

Our weekly look at the Mavericks' young players:

If Rodrigue Beaubois is going to prove he's a big-leaguer and worthy of being in the Mavericks' future plans, his time is now. The minutes are going to come for Beaubois during this stretch of nine games in 12 nights that started in brutal fashion Tuesday with a 93-92 loss to the New Jersey Nets.

Beaubois logged 24 minutes of mixed results in his first game action since Feb. 8. He missed the last five because of the death of his father and didn't play at all in the three games before that because coach Rick Carlisle put the shackles back on him.

But with Delonte West injured and out likely another three weeks, Dallas is desperate to keep Jason Kidd's minutes at 30 a game. To do that, the Mavs must get quality minutes out of their soft-spoken third-year guard.

"We have to be ready because of the schedule,'' Beaubois said. "There's going to be a lot of games, and it's going to be tough.''

Tougher if Beaubois doesn't raise his game. He scored 11 points against the Nets with two assists, three rebounds, three steals and a couple turnovers. He was just 3-of-10 from the field, but the buckets he did make reveal the allure of the lithe, 6-foot-3 still-raw youngster. He hit a 3-pointer, floated in a pretty tear drop and one sequence he made a quick move to the right from the top of the arc, slithered his way to the free throw line and popped in a jumper.

Dominique Jones, who had received heavy minutes while Beaubois was home with his family, received less than four minutes Tuesday and some of that time was spent on the floor with Beaubois in a rare three-guard lineup.

The minutes are going to be there for Beaubois. It's his job now to prove that the minutes should continue to be there once West returns.