Dirk Nowitzki announces retirement on emotional night in Mavericks home finale

Dirk Nowitzki announces retirement on emotional night in Mavericks home finale

Dirk Nowitzki announces retirement on emotional night in Mavericks home finale

Dallas Mavericks' Dirk Nowitzki (41) celebrates sinking a 3-point basket during the second half of the team's NBA basketball game against the Phoenix Suns in Dallas, Tuesday, April 9, 2019.

The 40-year-old sharpshooter made the announcement at the end of the Dallas Mavericks' regular-season finale against the Phoenix Suns.

"As you guys might expect, this is my last home game", an emotional Nowitzki told the crowd at Dallas' American Airlines Center.

That shot had a practical goal as well, pushing the Dallas lead back to 12 after the Mavericks let a 30-point halftime cushion dwindle to four in the fourth quarter.

If Nowitzki doesn't return, the 20-year-old Doncic still will be able to say he spent a season with the player who changed the game as the first 7-footer who was a legitimate threat from the 3-point line.

Just as owner Mark Cuban hinted, the final home game trumped all those road shows.

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The guard played 38 minutes, shooting 60 percent from the field (53.8 percent from long range) to go along with five assists, five rebounds, one block and one steal.

But on this special night, Nowitzki turned back the clock, and so did the crowd as it chanted "M-V-P!" You may look at the numbers and (see) I'm only taking six shots a game.

The German power forward played all 21 seasons with the Mavericks. But Nowitzki appears to be on his way to ending an illustrious career in style. Nowitzki reached that spot last season, but James passed him.

The news came on the heels of a season full of speculation over Nowitzki's future plans and a pregame setup that hinted that this might be his last game in Dallas.

Bryant retired from the Lakers three years ago. "It just doesn't make any sense any more physically".

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