"If no one claims him then he becomes a free agent," Nelson said. "But, obviously, his family is his priority."
After leaving the Mavs last January to care for his ill wife, Thomas was set to return to the NBA and signed a one-year deal with Dallas for the veteran's minimum last month. Soon after he decided he needed to stay home and continue to care for his wife, who is recovering from an illness that Thomas has not disclosed publicly.
The Mavs will not incur a hit to the salary cap, Nelson said. They have 13 guaranteed contracts with four players in training camp on make-good contracts competing for a 14th spot. Nelson suggested the club will keep the 15th roster spot open for flexibility during the season.
"As far as the rotation goes, barring any surprises, we're pretty well set," Nelson said.