Mavericks to honor Dirk Nowitzki before hosting the Warriors

Mavericks to honor Dirk Nowitzki before hosting the Warriors

SAN ANTONIO, TX – APRIL 10: Dirk Nowitzki # 41 of the Dallas Mavericks was emotional during video of his highlights before the game against the San Antonio Spurs at the AT&T Center on April 10, 2019 in San Antonio, Texas. Ronald Cortes / Getty Images / AFP

The Dallas Mavericks will share the spotlight with the visiting Golden State Warriors on Wednesday when Dirk Nowitzki’s No. 41 jersey retires.

Nowitzki retired in 2019 as the Mavericks’ leader in most categories, including points and rebounds. His overall career point (31,560) ranks sixth on the NBA All-Time List.

Nowitzki played all of his 21 NBA seasons with the Mavericks. The 14-time All-Star is also linked to the Warriors through his relationship with Don Nelson, the legendary Golden State coach who orchestrated Dallas’ draft night acquisition of the German star from the Milwaukee Bucks in 1998.

“I wonder about Dirk and I love that guy for so many reasons,” current Warriors coach Steve Kerr said when he retired. “I love the way he plays. The way he behaves; he does not take himself too seriously, and yet he works incredibly hard in his craft. What a great combination.”

Nelson, who collected 422 of his NBA record with 1,335 coaching victories with the Warriors and 339 with the Mavericks, is expected to be ready for the ceremony. He ran the show in Golden State when Stephen Curry was drafted in 2009.

NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is also expected to attend the festivities.

European colleague Luka Doncic, the current face of the Mavericks franchise, said he was looking forward to the historic evening.

“He did a lot of things, not just for people from Europe, but in the United States,” the 22-year-old Doncic said. “Everyone has the highest respect for him, the highest everything. They just enjoyed watching him play. Also in Europe. Especially the children. They grow up in Europe, they know Dirk. Everyone from Europe follows Dirk, so he got respect from everyone . ”

The game puts two teams that want to parlay healthier lists into longer winning streaks.

The Warriors are still awaiting the green light on Klay Thompson and James Wiseman, and they had every other player available on Monday as an impressive team effort overcame a rare off night for Curry in a 115-108 home win over the Miami Heat.

Jordan Poole got in his second outing after six games COVID-related absence 32 points against Heat. Draymond Green came in with five points, eight rebounds, 13 assists and four blocks as he returned from an absence in two games in the league record.

Curry was held to a season-low nine points for Golden State, which has won five of its last six games.

The Mavericks offered Doncic and Tim Hardaway Jr. welcome back from the COVID-19 protocol with consecutive victories over the Oklahoma City Thunder and Denver Nuggets.

Doncic returned with a resurgence after missing 10 games in a row while also handling an ankle injury. He averaged 17.5 points, 8.5 rebounds and 12.5 assists in wins over the Thunder and Nuggets.

Hardaway returned from a six-match break to a total of 21 points in the victories.

Dallas remains without Kristaps Porzingis, who went into COVID minutes before Sunday’s victory in Oklahoma City.

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