Dallas Mavericks superstar Dirk Nowtizki admitted that he suffered a setback in his recovery from the ankle surgery he underwent late last season, as head coach Rick Carlisle announced earlier during the week.
“I’ve had some foot problems. I had surgery in April and it healed okay,” Nowitzki said, according to Alex Kennedy of HoopsHype. “Told I was working out in Aug. and I think I did too much. I had a little setback. Right now it’s not great. I haven’t practiced with the team. I’m [limited] to light shooting, cardio work and lifting weights.”
Carlisle indicated that it would only a matter of weeks until the legendary German player makes his season debut, a milestone that will break former Los Angeles Lakers’ superstar Kobe Bryant’s record for most seasons with one franchise.
“Yeah. I always said, ‘Whatever is best for the team,’” Nowitzki said. “We had two tough seasons. [I’ll do] whatever helps us win. We’ll see how our team shapes up; Coach will figure out what’s best. It’s about the team, about the franchise. It’s not so much about one guy.”
Mavs’ Rick Carlisle Talks About Luka Doncic Carrying Team
Dallas Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle knows that rookie guard Luka Doncic is having an incredible rookie season, but understands that the guard is carrying a big load for the team.
Doncic took over the game in the Mavs’ win against the Portland Trail Blazers that came down to the wire.
“It was one of those times where he was going to have to finish for us to have a chance,” Carlisle said, according to Gerry Fraley of SportsDay. “I love the fact that he loves carrying the load. He’s one of those dynamic young players that has the charisma to give his teammates confidence.”
The Mavericks made a number of moves at the trade deadline, leaving even more on the plate of Doncic.
“There’s more responsibility falling on Luka,” Carlisle said. “This is an important stretch to feel what it’s all about and what it feels like and what it feels like to have to deliver in all these different areas. He’s certainly capable of doing it.
“We’ve got to prepare him to carry this load going forward.”
Mavericks Acquire Kristaps Porzingis from Knicks
The Knicks will receiver Dennis Smith Jr., Wesley Matthews, and DeAndre Jordan in exchange for Porzingis, Trey Burker, Courtney Lee, and Tim Hardaway Jr..
Dallas is working to acquire a 1st round pick to include in the deal, according to ESPN.
The Mavs are hoping to re-sign Porzingis, who is scheduled to become a restricted free agent this summer, and are confident that both Dirk Nowitzki and Luka Doncic can help convince him to sign.
Porzingis has been out for close to a year with an ACL injury and an evaluation in January revealed that his knee is healing well.
Porzingis had recently met with the Knicks organization to express his frustration with the team’s losing and past dysfunction, while also expressing his uncertainty that they can achieve sustainable success.
Mavericks’ Dennis Smith Jr. Returning to Team
From the trading block, to stepping away from the team, and taking a backseat to rookie phenom Luka Doncic, Dallas Mavericks point guard Dennis Smith Jr. has had a rough season.
According to The Athletic’s Sham Charania, Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle and Smith spoke on the phone and were able to work out the issue, resulting in Smith making a return to the team on Tuesday.
During the conversation, Carlisle apologized and showed remorse to Smith during the call.
Smith is averaging 12.6 points and 3.9 assists per game for Dallas this season.
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