Tyson Chandler expected to return

DALLAS -- Starting center Tyson Chandler is expected to return for the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday after missing one game with a stomach illness.

The Mavs will look to extend their winning streak to 11 games against the struggling New Jersey Nets and Avery Johnson, who will return to Dallas for the first time as the visiting coach.

"I don't know if I had a little stomach virus or what," Chandler said. "I guess there's something floating around. I talked to my grandmother and she told me, 'Baby, it's floating around.' A couple of days and I'm fine now."

Chandler's 7-foot-1 presence will be important against 7-foot, 265-pound Nets center Brook Lopez. Mavs coach Rick Carlisle said Ian Mahinmi, who recorded a double-double in Tuesday's win over Golden State will remain on the active roster, but fourth-string center Alexis Ajinca, who played a solid nine minutes Tuesday, might be inactive in favor of forward Steve Novak.

Rookie Dominique Jones will remain with the D-League Texas Legends as they leave town for a weekend road trip.

The Nets enter the game losers of five in a row and with the Eastern Conference's worst record at 6-16. But, emotions should be high in Johnson's first time back at American Airlines Center as an opposing coach.

"I think we'll be focused," Carlisle said. "Avery did a great job when he was here, that's obvious. I think everybody appreciates what he did when he was here. We have to play a basketball game against their basketball team and that's what we have to focus on."

Jeff Caplan covers the Mavericks for ESPNDallas.com. You can follow him on Twitter.