Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 9/25/13
The injury-plagued 2012-13 season for Dallas Mavericks power forward Dirk Nowitzki was continuously chronicled by his naysayers who wanted to write the former league and NBA Finals MVP off after the 11-time All-Star was forced to sit out the first 27 games following preseason arthroscopic knee surgery. Nowitzki’s uphill climb to recapture his elite form was proof that he has plenty left in the tank however as his production steadily picked up before season’s end. Now after an offseason in which the 7-footer turned 35 years old and welcomed his first child into the world the Mavericks are once again hoping to ride their caped crusader’s coattail back to the playoffs. “You put a much better set of players around him and now it’s Dirk in a situation where he doesn’t have to rush back; where he’s had all summer to prepare his body and get ready” Mavericks owner Mark Cuban said this offseason during an interview with ESPN 103.3 FM. “You know knock on wood if we stay healthy I think people are dismissing Dirk in ways that they shouldn’t. Like I’ve been telling him Karl Malone won an MVP at 35 and there’s no reason why he can’t be considered in an MVP conversation at 35. I can also tell you that the way people are just randomly dismissing him as basically being done has been incredible motivation for him as well.” Motivation is one thing. But in order to maintain Nowitzki’s play at a high level the Mavs might also look to keep his minutes low while using a multitude of faces at the backup 4 spot. During the lockout-shortened 1998-99 campaign which was coincidentally Nowitzki’s rookie season Malone finished third in the league in scoring while averaging 23.8 points to go along with 9.4 rebounds a night. He also played a jaw-dropping 37.4 minutes a game en route to his second MVP trophy. Nowitzki hasn’t seen that kind of playing time since averaging 37.5 minutes in 80 appearances during the ’09-10 season with his time steadily decreasing ever since.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Report: Giants’ Victor Cruz cleared to practice

PETA sends Warren Sapp vegan lobster following shark bite

Report: Josh McCown has looked better at times than RG3

Mike Trout does David Ortiz impersonation

Suspended Steelers WR Martavis Bryant set to help coach HS football

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Tickets for ‘Monday Night Football’ game in Mexico sell out

Kevin Durant says he never told Russell Westbrook he was staying in OKC

God Shammgod hired by Mavericks as player development assistant

Soccer player terminates contract after being attacked by stray dogs

Todd Bowles confirms Ryan Fitzpatrick is Jets starting QB: ‘It’s his job’

Carmelo Anthony shocked Dwyane Wade left Miami for Chicago

Giants acquire All-Star Eduardo Nunez from the Twins

Vikings QB injured trying to kick open door

Josh Gordon thankful for support from Browns

Report: Seahawks DE Chris Clemons retiring

Denard Robinson blames falling asleep at stoplight for pond crash

Everything that's already gone wrong at the Rio Olympics

Hue Jackson: Browns will give Josh Gordon a fresh start

Diamondbacks nearing Daniel Hudson trade

Amar'e Stoudemire's presence (and absence) changed the NBA

What would George Costanza have traded to get Bonds and Griffey?

Gabby Douglas can make USA Gymnastics history at Olympics

Week 3 will determine the Big Ten's reputation this season

NBA News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Everything that's already gone wrong at the Rio Olympics

Amar'e Stoudemire's presence (and absence) changed the NBA

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Why Gary Bettman's CTE denial is cause for concern for NHL

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

QUIZ: Name every Olympic event in which the USA has never won a gold medal

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

One Gotta Go: Do NBA players really love NBA2K?

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker