Nowitzki out for season opener
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 AllStar was doing better but hasn’t done any significant work on the court.
Butler not at T-wolves shootaround: Jimmy Butler was not with the Minnesota Timberwolves for their Friday morning shootaround in Milwaukee, a few hours ahead of their preseason finale.
Butler has demanded a trade but returned to practice with the team on Wednesday, a session that featured the disgruntled star verbally challenging teammates and coaches.
Coach Tom Thibodeau said Butler was not suspended and was doing conditioning work in Minneapolis.
Asked if Butler would play in Minnesota’s regular-season opener at San Antonio next Wednesday, Thibodeau said: “The situation remains fluid.”
Clippers sign Artis: The Clippers have signed guard Jamel Artis, who spent last season on a two-way contract with the Orlando Magic.
Artis averaged 5.1 points, 2.5 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 15 games for the Magic.
The 25-year-old guard started all 46 games he appeared in for the Lakeland Magic, averaging 19.5 points, 5.8 rebounds and 2.4 assists while shooting 46 percent from the field.
Artis played collegiately at Pittsburgh.
The move was announced Friday.
Heat, Winslow agree on extension: Justise Winslow has agreed to a $39 million, threeyear extension with the Miami Heat.
A person with direct knowledge of the agreement confirmed the terms to the Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because Winslow isn’t signing the contract until this weekend.
Winslow averaged 7.5 points and 5.3 rebounds on 41 percent shooting over his first three seasons, playing mostly as a reserve. He was the No. 10 pick in the 2015 draft out of Duke.
The contract means the Heat salary commitments for the season, when Winslow’s extension would begin, are about $135 million for 10 players.
Dirk Nowitzki, 40, is recovering from left ankle surgery and will be sidelined for Dallas’ opener Wednesday in Phoenix.