Nene returns after cancer
Denver Nuggets forward Nene played for the first time Thursday since taking a leave of absence Jan. 11 to undergo surgery for a malignant testicular tumor.
Nene, who underwent a single dose of chemotherapy last month, entered the game against the Dallas Mavericks at Denver with 1:17 left to a rousing standing ovation.
“It’s not about how he plays. . . . This has nothing to do with basketball. We’re just happy he’s with us,” Coach George Karl said beforehand.
Boston Celtics guard Rajon Rondo expects to start tonight against New Orleans despite suffering a sore hamstring Wednesday against Phoenix. . . . Portland Trail Blazers guard Brandon Roy will miss the next four games because of a groin injury suffered Tuesday against Washington. . . . Seattle SuperSonics forward Chris Wilcox will miss the rest of the season because of a dislocated finger on his right hand, first injured in a game Jan. 3 against the Phoenix Suns and aggravated March 19 against the Suns. . . . Currently on the outside of the Eastern Conference playoff race, the New Jersey Nets (31-41) have no plans to fire Coach Lawrence Frank if they don’t make the playoffs, team President Rod Thorn told the Newark Star-Ledger.