Dirk Nowitzki Announces Retirement After 21 Seasons In NBA

The Mavericks veteran told a packed crowd at American Airlines Center, "This is my last home game", following Dallas' 120-109 victory over Phoenix.

It would have been hard to know that, though, from the festivities leading into the contest, which the Mavs billed as a "41.21.1" event, referring to Nowitzki's jersey number, as well as time spent in the National Basketball Association.

Nowitzki, who averaged 6.6 points per game this season, went on to score the first 10 points for the Mavericks as no other Dallas player took a field-goal attempt until Devin Harris' 3-pointer at the 7:25 mark of the first quarter.

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.

It's been known pretty much all season that the Dallas Mavericks legend would retire at the conclusion of this campaign, however, he never officially announced it.

He will go down as one of the greatest to ever play the game and one of the most entertaining players to ever watch.

The final game of Nowitzki's storied career will be tonight against the Spurs. He made 11, was 5 of 14 from 3-point range, grabbed eight rebounds and matched a season high with three assists. His final basket for his signature one-legged fadeaway from just above the free throw line in the final two minutes.

Nowitzki, sitting at 31,540 points with one game left, gave the home crowd another thrill last month by passing Wilt Chamberlain to regain sixth on the career scoring list. You guys always stuck with me and supported me.

The news came on the heels of a season full of speculation over Nowitzki's future plans and a pregame setup that hinted that this might be his last game in Dallas.

He also made more than $250 million.

The German power forward played all 21 seasons with the Mavericks.

  • Angelo Rivera