Dirk Nowitzki sits out with sore knee
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Deron Williams was right -- the Dallas Mavericks really are a mess without star power foward Dirk Nowitzki, writes Tim MacMahon. Blog
Nowitzki played 34 minutes in the Mavericks' 89-84 victory against Alba Berlin in Berlin on Saturday. He scored 11 points on 3-of-9 shooting but then saw his knee swell after practice Monday.
"Unfortunately, the last two days it didn't respond great," Nowitzki said after Tuesday's loss. "There was some swelling again, so I think right now in the preseason it's not the time to play on a swollen knee. Hopefully it's just a reaction to running and jumping and we'll see how it responds."
Nowitzki missed four games last January to get himself into better game shape, and part of that in-season minicamp involved strengthening his right knee. As he got into shape he started to look like himself, although his 21.6 scoring average was the lowest since his second season in the NBA.
Tuesday's game in Barcelona was the final stop of a weeklong, two-game trip in Europe for the Mavericks, who will fly home Wednesday. Their next game is Monday night at the American Airlines Center against Houston, although the team will go through an open scrimmage at 5:30 p.m. Saturday.
Chuck Cooperstein works for ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM and is with the Mavericks on their current European trip.
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