DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM/AP) – Dirk Nowitzki scored his 30,000th career point versus the L.A. Lakers Tuesday night.
Nowitzki is the 6th player in NBA history to reach this milestone.
Nowitzki scored 18 points in the first quarter.
Early in the second quarter, he hit a fadeaway shot to collect his 30,000th point.
The 7-foot German, in his 19th season, is the third to score at least 30,000 points with one team. The others are Karl Malone (Utah) and Kobe Bryant (Lakers).
“Dirk has been a model player and terrific ambassador for our game. This latest accomplishment further establishes his legacy as one of the NBA’s greatest players,” NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said in a statement.
The 30,000 list includes four Hall of Famers in career leader Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (38,387 points), Malone, Michael Jordan and Wilt Chamberlain, and a future one in Bryant, who is third. Julius Erving also reached the milestone with his ABA career included.
Fans arrived with T-shirts draped over their seats that read “30K” behind a silhouette of Nowitzki’s signature one-footed fadeaway jumper.
Nowitzki hit his first six shots and finished the first half with 25 points, just one shy of his season high. He was 9 of 12 from the field, 3 of 3 from beyond the arc and 4 of 4 on free throws before halftime.
A short video tribute was played when the game was stopped, followed by testimonials from former teammates and fans, even some Germans, during subsequent breaks in the game.
The only glitch was Nowitzki’s first attempt at 30,000, an airball on another fadeaway jumper 10 seconds into the second quarter.
His 18-point first quarter was the highest-scoring period for a Dallas player this season, topping Harrison Barnes’ 14 in the second quarter of an 86-75 victory over Milwaukee in early November.
While the Lakers did little to stop Nowitzki’s pursuit of the milestone, they made sure it didn’t happen in the first quarter.
With the final seconds winding down, a defender jumped out on him at the 3-point line, forcing Devin Harris to make an open 3 when he wanted to pass to Nowitzki.
The Mavericks won the game 122-111.
(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)