Nets' Gerald Wallace returns

Brooklyn Nets small forward Gerald Wallace returned Wednesday night against the Atlanta Hawks, but did not start.

Wallace, who missed the past two games because of bruised ribs, checked in at the 4:15 mark of the first quarter.

Wallace was injured midway through the first quarter of Friday night's victory against the Phoenix Suns. He tried to finish a dunk in transition, but was fouled and fell hard to the floor.

Wallace, 30, is averaging 9.8 points, 5.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists in 28 games this season. He missed seven games earlier in the season because of a sprained left ankle, and missed one because of a bruised left knee.

Keith Bogans will make his third straight start at small forward.

Mike Mazzeo is a regular contributor to ESPNNewYork.com.