Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks

A Texas native, Stacy Stine Cary spent more than 13 years running her own business, GeOasis. In her free time, Stacy Cary enjoys following Texas professional sports, particularly the Dallas Mavericks.

A native of Wurzburg, Germany, Dallas Mavericks power forward Dirk Nowitzki was selected as the ninth overall pick in the 1998 National Basketball Association (NBA) draft. At 20 he debuted during the Mavericks’ 1998–1999 season, the franchise’s 19th with the league. The team had previously qualified for the postseason just six times, winning only four playoff series. Nowitzki proved to be a wise selection for Dallas, as their postseason luck changed almost immediately. The Mavericks struggled during the rookie’s first year, but ahead of the 1999–2000 season Nowitzki took on a larger role. He averaged over 17 points while playing nearly 36 minutes per game, leading the team to 40 wins for the first time in a decade.

It was during Nowitzki’s third year, the 2000–2001 season, that Dallas truly became a powerhouse in the NBA’s Western Conference. The team finished the year 53–29 and advanced to the second round of the playoffs. Nowitzki then led Dallas to 12 consecutive playoff berths and 14 postseason runs in 15 years. During the playoff streak he averaged a minimum of 21 points and more than six rebounds per season while regularly shooting around or above 50 percent.

With Nowitzki, the Mavericks have reached the Western Conference Finals three times. In 2006 they progressed to the NBA Finals for the first time, but fell to the Miami Heat. They returned to the Finals in 2011, this time defeating the Heat in six games, and Nowitzki was named Finals MVP.

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