Published: Sun, April 14, 2019
Sport | By Joe Gonzales

Nowitzki announces retirement after final home game

Nowitzki announces retirement after final home game

Following the matchup, Nowitzki informed the American Airlines Center crowd that it would be his final home game.

Dirk Nowitzki #41 of the Dallas Mavericks is greeted by Gregg Popvich head coach of the San Antonio Spurs before the start of the game at AT&T Center on April 10, 2019 in San Antonio, Texas.

Several icons of the National Basketball Association were also in the arena to witness his send-off, including Larry Bird, Charles Barkley, Scottie Pippen and the Mavs' former German power forward Detlef Schrempf.

Dwyane Wade was honoured after his final home game for Miami Heat.

Dallas, playing the second game of an emotional home-road back-to-back, had a two-game winning streak snapped and ended the season at 33-49.

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That shot had a practical goal as well, pushing the Dallas lead back to 12 after the Mavericks let a 30-point halftime cushion dwindle to four in the fourth quarter. Nowitzki made the free throw to forge a tie and the Mavs went on to win in overtime on the way to the franchise's first NBA Finals appearance.

It would have been the flawless way to end a career, but instead, he had to play one final game in San Antonio. "It just took a little bit of the fun away from the sport I love".

But the league's 2007 MVP and 2011 NBA Finals MVP also knew how hard the past two seasons had been physically, including missing the first 26 games of his final campaign after a longer-than-expected recovery from ankle surgery last April. Nowitzki reached that spot last season, but James passed him. The 7-footer scored 10 points in the opening seven minutes and had 19 points on a season-high 18 shot attempts in the first half. "If I get to see any improvement, if it's still fun, and I guess we're going to make that decision later".

"He played a fine game, which was great". He has played for a total of eight teams across his career and has been named Sixth Man of the Year three times and Teammate of the Year once.

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