All point guard Devin Harris wanted for Christmas was to be back on the basketball court playing for the Dallas Mavericks.
But that’s a gift Harris won’t be receiving. Harris, in fact, may not get to play his first game of the season until January.
Coach Rick Carlisle said Harris has suffered a setback in his bid to recover from toe surgery he underwent this summer on his left foot. The setback has the Mavs so concerned that they don’t even have a timetable set for Harris’ return.
“I think we’re putting the brakes on, obviously, with him a little bit,” Carlisle said after Tuesday’s practice. “He needs a little time to heal a little bit more and let that foot settle down.
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“He went back to the doctor [Monday]. The timetable for him being back to full activity, I’m not sure of.”
The Mavs were expecting Harris to be a capable veteran backup to starting point guard Jose Calderon. But for now, rookies Gal Mekel and Shane Larkin will continue in that role, with shooting guard Monta Ellis occasionally sliding over to direct the offense.
The delicate nature of Harris’ surgery has led to the 10-year veteran being on the sideline much longer than he or the Mavs anticipated.
Both parties will continue to ponder the situation as the Mavs (14-10) play host to the Memphis Grizzlies at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday at American Airlines Center.
“With this kind of surgery, it’s an unusual procedure, very unconventional, very different kind of situation,” Carlisle said of Harris. “But it’s a situation that’s not shocking.
“He was doing some good things until he got the setback. It’s just we’ve just got to stay the course and get him right.”
And whenever Harris gets right, that will take some pressure off Calderon.
“A guy like him is fast,” Calderon said of Harris. “He’s somewhat of a different player, so that will work for us.
“So hopefully he’ll be back as soon as possible and ready to help.”
Wright not 100 percent
It’s been four days since Brandan Wright played his first game of the season. And the 6-foot-10 center declared Tuesday that his shooting percentage is higher than his physical well being.
“I feel good,” Wright said. “I’m feeling better every day and hopefully I’ll continue to beat the trend.”
Asked if he’s feeling better than 90 percent, Wright said: “No, I wouldn’t say that. I’ll probably say in the 80 percent range.”
By the way, Wright converted 90 percent of his field-goal attempts (9-of-10) while scoring 19 points in 19 minutes against the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday. It was Wright’s first game back after he suffered a non-displaced fracture to his left shoulder during an Oct. 8 practice.