Mavericks: Watch Dirk Nowitzki outduel Tracy McGrady in 2004

Dallas Mavericks Dirk Nowitzki (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
Dallas Mavericks Dirk Nowitzki (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

Mavericks GOAT Dirk Nowitzki dropped 53 points versus the Rockets in 2004. Tracy McGrady countered with 48 in one of the all-time great scoring duels.

Dallas Mavericks legend Dirk Nowitzki accomplished so much in his NBA career. From scoring 31,560 points to leading the Mavs to a championship in 2011 to winning the MVP, Dirk was impossible to stop. He became the Mavericks in so many ways.

The NBA honored Dirk by dropping a highlight package over the weekend. It is from one of the best regular season games of his career. Let us take a look at some backstory leading up to that game before enjoying the many highlights.

The Dallas Mavericks hosted the Houston Rockets on Dec. 2, 2004. Both teams were fresh off losing in the first round of the playoffs the year before.

Best moments from Dirk's rookie season. More

The Rockets were struggling out of the gate with six wins in 16 games coming in. They feature Tracy McGrady and Yao Ming, though. Houston figured to be a force come playoff time.

The Mavs had won ten of 16 entering the game with Dirk, Jason Terry, and Josh Howard leading the way.

This showdown will live on for years. Nowitzki and T-Mac went back and forth dropping buckets all night long. Dirk finished with a career-high 53 points on 32 field goal attempts. He went to the line 22 times. McGrady had 48 on 36 shots. It was an incredible performance by both men.

Mavericks fans need to check out the highlight video from that night the NBA released on April 19.

Nowitzki was a three-time All-Star when that game took place. He was at the beginning of his prime but had not won MVP. McGrady was a five-time All-Star. The 25-year-old was at the peak of his play. Injuries cut McGrady’s career short, but he was one of the NBA’s best players in 2004.

Next. 5 players for Porzingis to study during hiatus

Hopefully, supporters enjoyed watching those highlights again. That game was one of the best Dirk ever played, and there is never a bad time to honor the Mavericks GOAT.