Bobcats’ Bell to play after postponing surgery

CHARLOTTE, N.C.(AP) Charlotte Bobcats shooting guard Raja Bell(notes) planned to start against New Jersey Monday as he tries to play with a partially torn ligament in his left wrist.

Bell went through shootaround and coach Larry Brown said he would make his season debut against the Nets even though he hasn’t gone through a full contact practice. Bell last week decided to put off surgery that would sideline him up to four months and see if he could get through the season.

“It’ll be an adventure, but I feel pretty confident about it,” Bell said. “The passing, the dribbling, the rebounding and stuff is OK. I’ll try to protect it a little bit as best as I can until I get some practices. But when you feel like you can get out there and help, in any capacity, it’s kind of time to go.”

Bell’s return will be a boost for the Bobcats (1-2), who are the NBA’s lowest-scoring team and have had depth problems at shooting guard with backup Ronald “Flip” Murray also out with a stress reaction in his left shin. Brown said Murray could make his debut Friday against Atlanta.

The 33-year-old Bell, in the final year of his contract, averaged 13 points and four rebounds and shot 42 percent from 3-point range in 45 games with Charlotte last season after being acquired from Phoenix in December.

The Bobcats saw their playoff hopes derailed late last season when Bell was sidelined with a calf injury. Now Bell is trying to tough it out this season.

“If it starts to hurt,” Bell said, “then I’ll deal with that when it happens.”


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Updated Monday, Nov 2, 2009