Mavs' Chris Wright is learning how to deal with multiple sclerosis

Mavs' Chris Wright is learning how to deal with multiple sclerosis

Credit: NBAE via Getty Images

HOUSTON, TX - FEBRUARY 16: Chris Wright #33 of the Futures team dunks against the Prospects team during the 2013 NBA D-League All-Star Game in Sprint Arena at Jam Session during NBA All Star Weekend on February 16, 2013 at the George R. Brown in Houston, Texas. (Photo by David Sherman/NBAE via Getty Images)

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by GEORGE RIBA

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WFAA Sports

Posted on March 21, 2013 at 9:08 PM

DALLAS -- Chris Wright has the shortest contract that an NBA team can offer. The Mavericks guard is currently on day eight of a 10-day commitment.

"He's done a great job with everything that we've asked him to do in practice, in terms of working on his game and helping other guys on our team get better," said Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle.

Wright's three games with Dallas are his only NBA experience. And while he’s not known for his play, he's better known for overcoming a crippling disease.

Wright is the only player the NBA has ever had with multiple sclerosis.

"It's no coincidence," Wright said. "God has blessed me and put me here for a reason. So I take full responsibility for it. You know, I'm must working to stay here."

"It’s very unusual, but it’s also very inspirational," said Dr. Annette Okai, director of Baylor's Multiple Sclerosis Treatment Center in Dallas.

She said what Wright has accomplished is extraordinary.

"People with M.S. get a whole lot of fatigue and tire out easily," she said. "So with that in mind, it’s very hard to find someone in a physically demanding job."

"It's a phenomenal story," Carlisle said. "It's unprecedented. It's historic."

Wright remembers the day when he first learned that he had M.S. He was playing basketball in Europe when something unusual happened.

"I was on the court playing ball and my foot gave out," Wright said. "Then, as the next day came, basically the right side of my body, I lost all sensation and feeling in the rest of my body."

Wright gets injections once a month, but since there is no cure for M.S., his future in sports is uncertain.

"Can there be another episode? Absolutely," Wright said.

"The goal right now is to keep him relapse free and stable for a good period of time," Okai said.

And that will allow him to do what he enjoys most -- play basketball.

E-mail griba@wfaa.com

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