Denton: Harris May Return Friday vs. Cavaliers

   

Harris missed the next five weeks before returning on Nov. 24 to play 16 minutes against the Phoenix Suns. However, he felt pain in that game and the Magic had to scrap a plan to insert him into the starting lineup on Nov. 26 in Atlanta.

He’s spent most of the past two-plus weeks doing sprint drills, pool work and spending time on the stationery bike. And even though Harris was unavailable to play, Vaughn wanted him around the team so he could stay in tune with what the Magic were doing. Staying around his teammates helped Harris get through the doldrums of more rehabilitation work, he said.

``It’s definitely good being around the team and being with the guys and seeing the attitude of the players,’’ said Harris, who averaged 17.3 points and 9.5 rebounds over the final 27 games of last season following a trade that brought him from Milwaukee to Orlando. ``It was a tough trip for us with the losses, but I tried to keep everybody positive. I tried to get mental reps in also during the games, shoot around and practices. So (being around the team) was very important.’’

Vaughn knows that having all of the players back will greatly enhance Orlando’s scoring punch, rebounding strength and depth. In the four games that Vucevic missed because of a sprained ankle suffered when he accidentally stepped on a courtside photographer’s foot, Orlando was outrebounded by 70 boards. With Vucevic back in the lineup on Wednesday night, Orlando pounded a good rebounding Charlotte team on the glass, 52-41, with 14 offensive rebounds.

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