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Old 01-06-2012, 01:57 PM   #10 (permalink)
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From doug smith:

Bit of a surprise but Raps may get Kleiza back this weekend

In something of a surprise, the Raptors may get a new, old face back very soon.

Linas Kleiza, who told us in New York on Monday that he was a week or so away from returning, could dress for Friday’s home game against New jersey or Saturday’s game in Philadelphia, coach Dwane Casey said after shootaround Friday.

Now “dress” and “play” are two entirely different things, remember.

Kleiza, who hasn’t played since having knee surgery in February, isn’t about to all of a sudden assume a huge role, Casey warned. It’s entirely possible he’s very much eased back into things, particularly because Kleiza hasn’t even had a full contact practice.

He’s been doing some 5-on-0 work for a week or two but the paucity of practice time, and his rehab work, have kept him out of the full range of workouts.

Still, he will eventually give the Raptors a veteran forward to add to the mix along with Rasual Butler and James Johnson. Casey is pretty happy with the defensive efforts he’s getting from those two guys but Kleiza presents an improvement offensively.

For the Nets, who drag a 1-6 record into the game, there’s some question on who might be available.

Kris Humphries said Friday morning his sore shoulder is better and he expects to play but coach Avery Johnson said the availability of Humphries and point guard Deron Williams won’t be determined until after the pre-game warm up.

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