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Grading the Mavs' Season: Dirk

I happened to be looking over at another one of our SBN sites (DefendingBigD) the other day and I saw a series of posts where they were grading every player on their roster the past season. Looking at the Mavs’ roster, it seems like a cool idea to do some of those over here. Now, whenever I do post these, I’m going to avoid players that aren’t here anymore (i.e. Matt Carrol, Eddie Najera, etc.) and players that really did not have much of a role on this team (i.e. Deshawn Stevenson). But for the most part, lets see what the community thinks of the Mavs’ roster!

So for our first player, we’re going to take a look at Dirk Nowitzki. Looking at Dirk’s stats, he had a typical year for him: averaging 25 points and 7.7 rebounds while shooting lights out from the free throw line and connecting on over 42% of his shots from the field and beyond the arc. Over the past 10+ seasons, Dirk, along with Mike Modano, has been the face of sports in the DFW Metroplex. Now with Modano seemingly gone, the city’s favorite athlete might as well be Dirk. For all the love (and a solid share of criticism) the city has given Dirk, he has responded time after time, carrying the Mavs into the playoffs and should very easily be a first ballot Hall of Famer whenever he retires.

Positives: A typical Dirk year is in itself a positive, but despite all the moving pieces and problems that the Mavs have had, Dirk’s had these types of years for what seems like forever. Although some Mavs fans have constantly felt the need to complain about how a team can’t win with Dirk as the main focal point, the fact of the matter is that he really was one of the few players that actually showed up in the playoffs and nearly willed the Mavs to victory in Game 6 against the Spurs (with a little help from Roddy B of course)! On another note, it was really nice to see him be the focal point at the All-Star Game and get to make the first couple of baskets for the West.

Negatives: As believed by some people in the media, a good part of Dirk’s legacy is going to come down to whether he wins a Championship. Although he put together another great season, Dirk again failed in his quest for the Championship. For the most part, though, that, while obviously a huge negative, is probably the only negative thing you could say about Dirk’s season. Looking at his stats, most of the numbers either stayed the same or went up. The only thing you could say went down was his rebounds, but that would be being extremely picky.

My Grade: I’d give him a solid 9. Obviously going out in the first round stings, but that really was not Dirk’s fault. For the most part, he played like his usual self for the entire season, which, I think any Mavs’ fan would be more than happy to see for the upcoming couple of years.

Outlook: Having just signed a four year extension, it seems safe to say that Dirk is set on staying in Dallas for what might be the rest of his career. At this point, its been a great career for Dirk and I don’t think we can expect it to be any different for at least the next couple of years. The only thing missing off his resume remains the Championship, which hopefully will come soon.

Make sure and post your reason for your grade and your outlook for the future in the comments section!