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Harpring could miss a game

TORONTO — Forward Matt Harpring, playing regularly but still recovering from offseason knee surgery, is not playing at full physical-health capacity, the Jazz suggested Thursday.

As a result, Jazz trainer Gary Briggs said Harpring's minutes will continue to be controlled and the Jazz tri-captain may not even play Saturday night at Chicago.

Harpring is, however, expected to play tonight at Toronto.

"His doctor said no back-to-backs," Briggs said, "so I doubt if he'll play Saturday."

For now, Harpring, who has been coming off the bench, is being limited to seven-minute playing stretches capped at about 28 total. His longest actual stints have not exceeded 22 minutes.

"We'll see how his swelling responds," Briggs said. "He's got a little bit, but then it goes away."

Meanwhile, forward Carlos Boozer took part in pre-practice stretching Thursday — but still is not practicing due to a strained left hamstring.

"He's improving . . . but I have no time frame as to when he can play," Briggs said of Boozer, who because of injuries has not played a regular-season or preseason game since last Feb. 14.

Jazz coach Jerry Sloan, who typically does not dwell on injury woes, made it seem Thursday that he is anxious to have a fully healthy team at his disposal.

"I don't have Matt (Harpring) back at 100 percent. I don't have Boozer back," he said. "You know, we need everything we can get to try to win."

HINT, HINT: Sloan hinted Thursday that lineup or rotation changes may in store, if not tonight then perhaps soon.

"Obviously," he said, "you look at a lot of different things as you're going along — see if something else will make us better, get us off to a better start, get us better concentration, whatever."

KIDD ON THE KID: Growing up in Dallas, Jazz rookie point guard Deron Williams was a huge Jason Kidd fan when the All-Star was playing for the Mavericks.

Some have even suggested Williams' game is similar to that of Kidd's.

On Wednesday, while the Jazz were in New Jersey to face Kidd's Nets, the master paid some props of his own to the admirer.

"I've seen him a little bit," Kidd told the Newark Star-Ledger. "He's unselfish, he plays with energy and he tries to play the game the right way. He's the same size, too (about 6-foot-3)— so there might be something there.

"Maybe the knock on him was he wasn't a great shooter, but there's always going to be somebody who finds a flaw in your game," Kidd added. "They say I can't shoot, so I'm very honored that when I was in Dallas he looked at my game and thought I was doing something right."