The surgery could cause Nowitzki to miss up to six weeks, and he will be out at least the first few weeks of the NBA's regular season.
Having Dirk out of the lineup is difficult enough, but another question that must be asked is what if Dirk's injury is more serious?
If Nowitzki is forced to play at less than 100 percent, or even miss more time than expected during the regular season, it takes the Mavericks from a legitimate playoff contender to possibly one of the weakest teams in the West.
In order to ensure that doesn't happen, Dallas needs to have a disaster plan in place if Dirk's knee doesn't heal.
Here are five things Rick Carlisle, Donnie Nelson and Mark Cuban, as well as the rest of the roster must do in the event that Dirk Nowitzki's injury prolongs throughout the season.