Mavericks win on a historic night for the German forward…
Nowitzki signs Mavericks extension: Veteran extends stay in Dallas.
Nowitzki wants shorter NBA season: NBA stars call for less games.
Nowitzki to play in EuroBasket 2015: German star wants to represent country next year.
Dallas Mavericks star Dirk Nowitzki has moved up to No.9 on the NBA’s all-time scoring list and has become the highest scoring international player in the league’s history.
Nowitzki moved past Hakeem Olajuwon into ninth place on the list and the 17-year veteran had more reason to be cheerful as his 23 points on Tuesday night led the Mavericks to a 106-98 win over the Sacramento Kings.
“It’s an honor,” said Nowitzki, who knocked down a midrange jumper with 8:56 remaining in the game to pass Olajuwon. “To do it at home, it was even more special. Getting a standing ovation, it was great.
“Hakeem, to me, was one of the greatest. I grew up watching him in the 90s. His footwork, his touch, was next to no other. I’m really humbled to keep climbing the ladder, blessed to stay healthy, and play at a semi-high level, I guess.”
The German star moves to 26,953 points in his career, and the 12-time All-Star is averaging 20.9 points per game this season so far and is likely to become the seventh-leading scorer in NBA history within a couple of months as he moves closer towards Elvin Hayes and Moses Malone.
“Dirk has earned everything he’s gotten, and every step up the ladder he takes is a reflection of his effort and his focus,” Mavs owner Mark Cuban said before the game. “To be the greatest international scorer ever is an amazing accomplishment. We’re glad to have him here.”
Coach Rick Carlisle added: “It’s just a tribute to his greatness. Guys like him that live their entire life committed to excellence are able to do things like this, and that is why he is so special.”