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SHORT-HANDED NETS SEEKING SOME MAGIC ORLANDO, Fla. - The Nets might - might - have 10 available players tonight.

Unfortunately, so will the Magic.

There is a mighty "might" for the Nets , because though Courtney Lee (groin) and Chris Douglas-Roberts (swine flu) made the trek with the team, there are no guarantees either could or would play.

Lee appeared to tweak his injury - though he downplayed it - while working out yesterday in preparation for tonight's game (7:00; YES, WFAN 660 AM). And Douglas-Roberts, back with the team for the first time since coming down ill nine days ago and later being diagnosed as the first known NBA player suffering from the H1N1 virus, admitted the sickness took a heavy toll on his strength.

"The first day, that was tough," Douglas-Roberts said, noting he doesn't know if he'll play tonight after the workout left him winded. "But I had it during the Denver game. I started feeling chills and I just didn't think much of it. After the game, once I got in the shower, I had the shower on the hottest it could be and I still was real cold.

"It was real tough, mainly because you just feel so submissive when you're sick. And having that - people hear swine flu and think you're about to die," Douglas-Roberts added. "People were trying to keep away. That was the toughest thing, and having to watch the games.

"I was secluded to my room. My mom came. She was coming in with a mask on," Douglas-Roberts said. "Somebody comes in with a mask on, it makes you feel real contagious."

Lee was working out with Douglas-Roberts when he came to a sudden stop and doubled over, obviously feeling something tweak in the strained groin area. Lee has missed 21/2 games for the Nets , who are seeking their first win after eight losses to start the season but are up against one of the elite tonight before going to Miami tomorrow.

"I just felt it a little bit," Lee said. "So definitely I don't want to push it to the limit. So you do a little bit and try to kill it, went in and got some ice and got a rubdown. So it was nothing major."

Lee was defending Douglas-Roberts and said he felt a little discomfort.

"It really wasn't a sharp pain," he said. "It was like a zing."

So both of the injured guys want to see how they feel today. Maybe they will play. Maybe not. For Lee, it's special tonight because he started his career in Orlando. For the rest of the Nets , it means another long-odds evening as they face the team that stomped them in their home opener with old pal Vince Carter getting 16 points and a sprained ankle and Dwight Howard having a 20-20 game.

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Added: November 14, 2009


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