DALLAS — Mavericks rookie point guard Dennis Smith Jr. was a late scratch for Friday’s game against the Sacramento Kings due to left knee effusion, a buildup of fluid in the knee.
Smith also will not play in Saturday’s road game against the Houston Rockets. Coach Rick Carlisle says the Mavs hope Smith can play Monday against the Golden State Warriors.
Smith tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in August 2015, the summer before his senior year of high school. He experienced swelling in the knee after shootaround Friday, and the decision was made to not start him less than an hour before the game.
Carlisle made no mention of Smith’s injury during his pregame news conference when he was asked about the matchup of Smith against Kings rookie point guard De’Aaron Fox.
Smith, 19, the No. 9 pick in the draft who has inspired optimism in Dallas that he can be the franchise’s next cornerstone player, had 16 points and 10 assists in the season opener to become the youngest player in NBA history to record a points-assists double-double in his debut.