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Robert Swift to Start Tonight?

by Darnell Mayberry Modified: April 12, 2013 at 5:58 pm •  Published: December 29, 2008

First to the news everyone is waiting on. There is no update on the status of Nenad Krstic’s signing. The Nets have until the end of the business day to make their announcement so we should know something in a few hours. But don’t expect Krstic to be in uniform tonight if the Nets decline to match.

As for tonight’s game against the Phoenix Suns, expect Robert Swift to start at center if Shaquille O’Neal plays tonight, coach Scott Brooks said at this morning’s shootaround.

It would be Swift’s fifth start of the season and 11th game of the year. He’s averaging 3.0 points and 3.7 rebounds in 10.3 minutes per game as a reserve against 3.0 points and 6.8 rebounds in 21.8 minutes as a starter.

If O’Neal sits, Brooks will go in a different direction, one that he’s not even sure of at this point.

“It’s going to be predicated on who they start,” Brooks said.

Here’s the problem, Joe Smith, the team’s starting center the past three games, has a  right knee contusion and will be a game-time decision, and Nick Collison is progressing from a  broken left thumb but is still questionable. That leaves Swift, Chris Wilcox and Johan Petro.

Collison participated in shootaround this morning for the first time since his injury.

“He’s leaning maybe to playing but (is) not totally sure yet,” Brooks said. “We’ll see how he feels tonight. It’s one of those things where you can’t break it more. It’s broken. He’s a tough kid. He can handle a lot of pain. Like I said earlier in the week, he must be in a lot of pain because he doesn’t sit out games. He loves to play. He loves to practice, and we expect him (back) soon, hopefully tonight.”

-DM-

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by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
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