The Dallas Mavericks sit in an intriguing and uncertain position heading into the 2013 NBA offseason; possessing a superstar like Dirk Nowitzki puts a slew of reasons for anxiety and optimism in a fan base that just saw its team miss the postseason for the first time in ages.
On the one hand, having an aging superstar like the 34-year-old Nowitzki can inspire a team to squeeze every last drop out of said superstar’s era with the squad. This springs especially true when it comes to a player who has done nothing to burn bridges with his fanbase, as Nowitzki solidified himself as Mavs royalty after the 2011-title run. Even better when Chris Paul and Dwight Howard are both very potential options for one more Dirk run.
On the flip side of The Dirk Factor, it makes you worry whether Mark Cuban will be clinging onto a championship window that’s already passed, to the detriment of Mavs’ following five years. Grantland Editor-in-Chiefs Bill Simmons touched on this in the final volume of his 2013 NBA Trade Value column.
“What happens with Dirk going forward? Kobe, Pierce and Dirk have one thing in common: They don’t have to chase a title like Karl Malone did,” Simmons wrote. “Dirk controls his own destiny; if he wants to retire in Dallas, Cuban would be delighted. … But if you think Dallas isn’t going balls-out after CP3 this summer to give their loyal superstar one last run, you’re crazy.9 We might even see Mark Cuban skip a Shark Tank taping this time around! Don’t count out Dirk Nowitzki just yet.