Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki sat out his third preseason game in a row on Wednesday night in an ongoing attempt to rest his swollen right knee and avoid potential surgery as the NBA regular season looms.
Instead of playing, Nowitzki has been doing cardio workouts alongside Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, who said his All-Star franchise centerpiece will "be just fine" in a report by Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com on Wednesday.
While surgery on Nowitzki's sore knee remains a possibility in the coming weeks if it isn't healing properly, Cuban is leaving the decision in the hands of the forward and the team's experts, saying in the report, "I trust our medical staff. Whatever is going to happen, we're going to be fine."
When asked why he wasn't overly worried about Nowitzki's knee, Cuban had this to say in the report:
"Because he's gone through it before. He went through it earlier in his career with his ankle. Now, his knee, we saw it last year, and we dealt with it. We'll deal with it again this year. That's why we invested in the best medical and training staff in the league."
Nowitzki averaged 21.6 points per game -- his lowest mark in the last nine years -- last season. He also grabbed 6.8 rebounds and dished 2.2 assists per game in 62 regular season contests. The Mavericks begin their 2012-13 campaign Oct. 30 in Los Angeles against the new-look Lakers.
Their next exhibition contest is Saturday, Oct. 20, against the Atlanta Hawks.