Mavericks feel Caron Butler's absence

Heat capitalize without injured player's scoring punch, defense on LeBron James

Updated: June 1, 2011, 10:17 AM ET
By Tim MacMahon | ESPNDallas.com

MIAMI -- You won't hear this excuse from any of the Dallas Mavericks' mouths. But man, could they use Caron Butler in this series.

As optimistic as Butler continues to be, don't get your hopes up that he'll play for the first time since New Year's Day in these NBA Finals.

Donnie Nelson, the Mavs' president of basketball operations, recently said it was "next to impossible" for Butler to return from a ruptured right patellar tendon to play this postseason.

Nothing has changed ...

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