Dallas Mavericks: Dirk Nowitzki checks in at 96 in SI’s Top 100

Dallas Mavericks Dirk Nowitzki (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks Dirk Nowitzki (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images) /

Dallas Mavericks legend Dirk Nowitzki ranked at 96 in Sports Illustrated’s Top 100 NBA Players countdown for 2019.

Dallas Mavericks GOAT and future Hall of Famer Dirk Nowitzki returns for his 21st season in Dallas this fall.  He has accomplished about everything the NBA has to offer.  Nowitzki is a 13-time All-Star, 12-time All-NBA player, 2007 MVP, and won a ring in 2011.

Dirk also had a 15-year run where he was one of the most feared big men in the NBA with the ball in his hands.  He was always an exceptional shooter and had a knack for scoring the basketball in ways the defense could not defend.

Now, Nowitzki is past his prime, but do not think the shooting has faded.  He connected on 138 of his 337 3-point attempts last season a 40.9 percent connect rate if you are keeping score at home.  Dirk averaged 12.0 points per game in 24.7 minutes a night over 77 games as a 39-year-old.

Related Story. Dirk is the NBA's funniest player

SI Top 100 players for 2019

Sports Illustrated released their annual Top 100 NBA Players list this week.  Dirk Nowitzki ranked at 96.  You can check out the full countdown here.

Last year, Nowitzki ranked 71 on their list.  The drop-off was not warranted.  Nowitzki played a minute and a half less per game last season but was more efficient shooting the ball.  Sure, he is not a plus defender at age 40, but Dirk’s offensive contributions outweigh his negative defensive value.

Nowitzki deserves to rank in the top 75 again this season, but SI did not agree.

Expect him to produce a similar stat line in the coming season.  The Mavs will ask Dirk to play around 25 minutes a game, and the big German will continue to shoot the lights out.

Final thoughts

Dallas Mavericks icon Dirk Nowitzki ranked 96th in Sports Illustrated’s Top 100 NBA Players of 2019.  Nowitzki fell 25 spots from last season and was rated too low.  Mavs fans will agree that defenders still are not lining up to defend Dirk at any point during the game.

Hopefully, he proves them wrong and continues his tremendous offensive play in season 21 for the Mavs.  Stay tuned.

Next. Grading the Mavs 2018 offseason

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