Mavericks expect big things from DeJuan Blair

The Mavs signed Blair to a one-year, $884,293 free-agent contract in August to help bolster their front line. Although he has to defend much taller centers, Blair adds some much-needed muscle and physicality the Mavs were lacking when they lost Elton Brand to the Atlanta Hawks via free agency over the summer.

“I just try to use more of what I have than what I don’t have,” the 6-foot-7, 270-pound Blair said. “I know I don’t have height, but I’ve got a lot of power and strength.

“I’m pretty strong, so it evens out. It’s nothing to me. I’ve been playing [center] all my life against seven-footers.’’

With center/power forward Brandan Wright out indefinitely with a small nondisplaced fracture of his left shoulder, Blair will likely see his playing time increased.

“He has a very good feel for the game for a big guy,” coach Rick Carlisle said.

Reported by Dwain Price of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram