We all know Dirk Nowitzki usually saves his best for the big stage. Game one’s poor performance wasn’t just a shocker, it was one of his worst playoff games of his career.
For his career, the future Hall-of-Famer averages 22.5 points on 47.6% shooting and 8.1 rebounds. His playoff numbers sky-rocket upwards, averaging 25.8 points (46.8% fg) and 10.2 rebounds in 129 games.
His 11 points from game one were tied for his 4th lowest scoring total in a playoff game and second fewest against the San Antonio Spurs in the postseason.
His career low in a playoff game was back in 2003 first round against the Portland TrailBlazers; he finished with just 4 points (2-11 fg) in 28 minutes in the game 6 loss to even the series 3-3.
Nowitzki’s other lows were in 2007 against the Golden State “We Believe” Warriors. The Big German would finish with just 8 points in the game six elimination loss. His career post season low against the Spurs occurred in during game one loss of the 2001 Western Conference Semifinals.
Outside of game one, Nowitzki has also scored 11 points in two other post season games. Game 4 against the Sacramento Kings during the 2003 Western Conference Semifinals and Game 4 during the 2006 Western Conference Finals against the Phoenix Suns, who also had current Spurs’ player Boris Diaw on the roster.
Good news for the Mavericks is that Nowitzki has usually bounced back strong from these poor outings. Against the Suns, he put up 50 points and 11 rebounds in the game 5 win. He also had 31 points and 11 rebounds on the Blazers. After his poor outing against the Spurs (20010) he had 19 points. Finally against the Kings, Nowitzki was one assist shy of a triple-double; he finished with 16 points, 15 rebounds, and 9 assists in the win.
As rare as it is for Nowitzki to have a bad game in the postseason, it will be completely uncharacteristic to see him struggle in game 2.