Nowitzki to miss Mavs' opener as left ankle rehab continues

Dirk Nowitzki #41 of the Dallas Mavericks puts up a shot over Mason Plumlee #24 of the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center on January 27, 2018 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)

DALLAS (AP) - Dirk Nowitzki's debut in his record 21st season with the Dallas Mavericks won't be in the opener.

Coach Rick Carlisle said Friday the 40-year-old Nowitzki will miss "multiple weeks" with a longer-than-expected recovery from left ankle surgery in April. The Mavericks open the season Wednesday in Phoenix.

Nowitzki said he had a setback when he started playing again about a week before training camp. He hasn't practiced in the preseason. The surgery just before the end of last season was to remove bone spurs.

Carlisle said the 13-time All-Star was doing better but hasn't done any significant work on the court.


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