After it was reported this week that Dallas Mavericks superstar Dirk Nowitzki was expected to return for a 21st NBA season in the 2018-19 campaign, he followed it up by doing something on Friday night against the Minnesota Timberwolves that just adds even more to his legacy.
According to a tweet at tipoff from Mavs.com beat writer Dwain Price , Nowitzki was able to do something that no player in NBA history has ever done before by playing in 75 games in a single year in, at least, season No.20.
“Dirk Nowitzki just became the first NBA player to play as many as 75 games in the 20th season of his career,” Price said. “Nowitzki shared the previous record of 74 with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (1988-’89) and Robert Parish (1995-’96).”
Nowitzki, who has been playing with some soreness in his knee as of late, still managed to play 26 minutes during the Mavs’ 93-92 loss to the Timberwolves. On the night, the 39-year-old forward had seven points on 3-of-7 shooting from the field, six rebounds, and two assists.
Despite the loss that dropped the Mavs to 23-53, head coach Rick Carlisle was impressed with the effort of his young players on the night. Small forward Harrison Barnes led the Mavs in scoring with 19 points on 8-of-18 shooting, while guards Dennis Smith Jr. and Yogi Ferrell finished with 17 and 14 points, respectively.
To open the month of April on Easter Sunday, the Mavs will travel to take on the Cleveland Cavaliers at Quicken Loans Arena with just six games left in the regular season.