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Dirk Nowitzki takes major pay cut with new Mavs contract

Dirk NowitzkiDirk Nowtizki’s contract extension with the Dallas Mavericks was officially announced on Tuesday, and the 12-time All-Star is reportedly taking even less money than some initially thought. According to ESPN’s Marc Stein, Nowitzki has signed a three-year, $25 million deal.

Nowitzki made $22.7 million last season, so he’ll be taking roughly a 60% pay cut. It was initially believed that Dirk signed a contract very close to the three-year, $30 million extension Tim Duncan signed with the San Antonio Spurs, but Nowitzki is taking even less in an attempt to give the Mavs more salary cap flexibility.

The deal also reportedly includes a no-trade clause and a player option to opt out after the 2015-2016 season.

“(Mark Cuban) knows I don’t want to go anywhere and he doesn’t want me to go anywhere,” Nowitzki recently told ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM. “We’re guessing that will be over pretty quick and then we can focus on making this franchise even better. This deal is not going to be about squeezing out the last dollar.”

Nowitzki’s hometown discount is one of the reasons Dallas was able to offer Chandler Parsons a three-year, $45 million deal that was too much for the Houston Rockets to match. Dirk likely realizes how strong the Western Conference was last season — led by the Spurs and Oklahoma City Thunder — and wants to put himself in position to win another ring before retiring.

Other players in Dirk’s position would try to squeeze every last dime out of what could be their final contract, especially since he has already won a championship. The new contract proves that he loves it in Dallas and always has the best interest of the team in mind.

Dirk Nowitzki won’t take ‘Kobe’s deal’ because he wants good team around him

Dirk Nowitzki MavericksDirk Nowitzki is a free agent, but don’t expect him to leave the Dallas Mavericks.

Dirk said after his Mavs were eliminated from the postseason that he plans on returning to the only team for whom he’s played. He also said he’s planning on figuring out a deal that will allow the team plenty of flexibility to bring in other good players so they can remain competitive.

“We want to get better as a team,” Nowitzki said via the Dallas Morning News. “And I’m pretty sure I’m not going to sign Kobe’s deal – unfortunately (Bryant signed a two-year, $48-million extension). “We’ll find a good way where I feel respected for what I did and we still have enough money left for us to get great players in here. Cubes has been great to me and been loyal to me for a long, long time. I’m sure we’re going to find a great solution for everybody.”

Dirk made $22.7 million this season, so he does have plenty in career earnings, but that also means he’s used to getting paid a ton. Will he take half that amount to give the Mavs the chance to build around him? Possibly. But it just goes to show you the difference in attitude. Kobe felt like he should be paid what he deserves based on his value to the franchise and that building the rest of the team is a YP for Mitch Kupchak, not an MP. Dirk thinks in a team mentality and is willing to take less to make the team better. It’s an admirable stance from Dirk.

Mark Cuban calls out Dirk Nowitzki for poor effort

Mark CubanMark Cuban absolutely loves Dirk Nowitzki, so it’s not often that you hear the Dallas Mavericks owner call out his star player. But that did happen on Monday.

Cuban talked with Dirk about the forward’s lackluster performance against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Sunday and then told the media about the issues.

“I think sometimes he loses concentration, and I think we’ve got to get past that,” Cuban said per the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “I mentioned it to him today. I asked him how his nap was during the game [Sunday at Oklahoma City]. He laughed. At least that’s while I was facing him. When I turned my back and walked away, I don’t know.”

The Mavs won that game easily, so I’m not sure what Cuban was looking for. He was also unhappy with Dirk’s game last Tuesday in a loss to the Golden State Warriors where Dirk had 12 and 6 and went 4-of-11 from the field.

Cuban said Dirk tends to go through stretches like this during the season, so Cuban is trying to get him to snap out of it.

“Dirk always goes through a little slump during the year where he needs to remotivate. And I think we’ve seen that for a couple of games, and I think he’s going to come back stronger, particularly after three days and those naps he’s gotten through the last couple of games,” said Cuban.

Cuban particularly wants to see Dirk crash the boards harder in an effort to rack up around 10 rebounds, because he thinks the teammates respond to that kind of effort and energy. It’s certainly a good thought, but Cuban needs to remember that Dirk is 35 and that his rebounds have been declining for a few years. He’s down to six rebounds per game this season compared to 9.7 at his peak in ’04-’05.

I’m dying over this Dirk Nowitzki Arnold Schwarzenegger impression (Video)

More and more Dirk Nowitzki is starting to become one of my favorite personalities in the NBA. He’s always been somewhat overlooked because he plays in Dallas and not LA, Chicago, Boston or New York, and because his teams used to choke in the playoffs. But he’s mustard as a player. And, man, he is easily one of the coolest, chillest dudes in the league. Take for instance that great Arnold Schwarzenegger impression he did on “The Dan Patrick Show.” How can you not love that?

Below is the real Arnold clip for comparison:

Dirk, man, that guy is so cool. Fun personality, great to follow on Twitter, and the guy is a baller. Love him.

H/T Yahoo! Sports via Hot Clicks

Knicks fan has tremendous reaction to Dirk Nowitzki game-winner (Video)

Knicks fan reactionNew York Knicks fans were hopeful that the team would beat the Dallas Mavericks on Monday night. Perhaps nobody expressed that emotion better than the fan seen above.

Have you ever seen someone switch from optimism to sadness so quickly and perfectly? That was incredible.

Below is a full video of Dirk’s game-winner to beat the Knicks 110-108:

Tip via David B

Dirk Nowitzki thought the Christmas sleeved jerseys were ‘awful’

NBA christmas sleeved jersey

Not too many people were fans of the sleeved jerseys the NBA had teams wear on Christmas. Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki, whose team had the day off, was one of those people.

Careful, Dirk, comments like those are grounds for a fine from David Stern.

But who disagrees with him? Not only are they non-traditional and ugly looking, one player even complained that the sleeves adversely affected his performance.

LeBron James also complained about the sleeved jersey prior to Christmas, and he didn’t seem to like wearing it during his game against the Los Angeles Lakers.

I didn’t think the jerseys were that bad, you know, if teams were trying to compete with Globo-Gym’s Purple Cobras for league dominance.

Mavericks fan hopes his wife is pregnant with Dirk Nowitzki’s baby

Dirk Nowitzki MavericksI’ve always found it somewhat creepy when grown men get tattoos of their favorite athletes’ faces on their bodies. That type of worship just weirds me out. But the dude who was holding the sign on Monday night about Dirk Nowitzki getting his wife pregnant helped give me some serious perspective.

Getting a soccer player’s face tattooed on your neck or a tattoo of an NBA player covering your arm is one thing — joking that you hope a player had sex with your wife takes creepiness to an entirely new level. And that’s assuming this guy is joking. We can only hope.

As SB Nation pointed out, the fan holding the sign is the one who tweeted it. He even included Nowitzki’s handle, so he really, really wanted Dirk to see it. I don’t know if it’s weirder that the guy is cool with it or that his wife thinks it’s funny. Either way, I’d be avoiding them if I was Dirk.

H/T Jimmy Traina’s The Big Buzz