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Back better, Nowitzki may play Friday

Back better, Nowitzki may play Friday

04:09 PM CST on Thursday, November 10, 2005

By EDDIE SEFKO / The Dallas Morning News

CHARLOTTE -- The Mavericks' Dirk Nowitzki, his back feeling better, may play Friday night against the Charlotte Bobcats.

Nowitzki said Thursday that he’ll test the back in the morning shootaround and a decision will be made on whether he will play. He injured the back late in the second quarter in a 112-97 loss at Philadelphia on Wednesday night.

“I freaked out (when it happened) because I’d never had a back problem before,’’ Nowitzki said. “But it’s only muscle pain. There’s nothing wrong with the spine, so hopefully I’ll be out there soon.’’

Nowitzki took a muscle relaxer to help him sleep when the team arrived in Charlotte and was moving around well enough to shoot free throws at an afternoon practice.

Coach Avery Johnson said he would exercise caution on whether or not to play Nowitzki.

“If I don’t think he can go, it’s just not worth it,’’ he said.

Meanwhile, Devin Harris (sprained ankle) said he was “pretty close to definite’’ that he would play against the Bobcats
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