The first practice back from All-Star Weekend is always a bit of an adventure. I was talking to one coach who came through AAC recently and he remembered when he was a player and his coaches always said to get a workout in every day during the break.

He never did.

Now he tells his players the same thing and they never do, either.

That’s the way it is for three or four days during the break. Players scatter. They get away from the constant harping of coaches and, by the way, coaches can get away from players who don’t remember a play from one possession to the next.

Dirk Nowitzki was in Mexico.So was Shawn Marion, although on the opposite coast. Several other Mavericks went south. Some visited family. Some just kicked back and did as little as possible.

The vacation ends at 3 p.m. this afternoon when the Mavericks get back for the first practice after the break.

Coach Rick Carlisle said he’s grateful to the NBA schedule maker who didn’t have them playing their first game after the break until Wednesday against Orlando.

“I think the break’s coming at a good time,” Carlisle said before the team disappeared after Wednesday’s win over Sacramento. “And I like that we have two practices after it to kind of get going again.”

That gives them one practice to make sure everybody sweats out whatever impurities they might have had during the break and another one to get ready for the Magic. That will leave no excuses on Wednesday night when the Mavericks renew the quest for .500.