Chris Kaman does contact work, could play Sunday

DALLAS – Mavericks center Chris Kaman participated in contact drills Thursday for the first time since suffering a concussion Jan. 28.

Coach Rick Carlisle said Kaman would not play Friday night against the New Orleans Hornets but could be available Sunday afternoon against the Los Angeles Lakers.

“We’ve got to get at least one more practice in before he can play,” Carlisle said. “If things continue to go well, he’ll be a possibility for Sunday.”

The 7-foot Kaman, who has missed the last nine games, was not available for comment.

It isn’t clear what Kaman’s role will be when he returns. He was demoted to the bench the two games before he was injured, playing season lows of 12 and 11 minutes in those games. Carlisle declined to discuss how Kaman might fit into the center rotation. Bernard James has started the last six games with Elton Brand playing the bulk of the minutes and Brandan Wright being used as a change of pace.

“I’m not going to get into that,” Carlisle said, “because we’ve got to get him back on the floor officially before that even becomes a conversation.”