DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – It was only a matter of time when Dirk Nowitzki retired after 21 seasons with the Dallas Mavericks and the NBA that he would see his #41 jersey hanging from the rafters of the American Airlines Center.
That time is coming on January 5, 2022 following the Mavericks game that night against the Golden State Warriors.
“Dirk Nowitzki’s illustrious career punctuates his unmatched loyalty to the Dallas Mavericks organization and the City of Dallas,” the Mavericks said in a news release Friday, Nov. 19.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver, Coach and former teammate Jason Kidd and team owner Mark Cuban will be special guests at the event.
Nowitzki joins Brad Davis (#10), Rolando Blackman (#22) and Derek Harper (#12) as the only Mavericks to have their jerseys hung in the rafters.
Nowitzki is the only player in NBA history to play 21 seasons with the same franchise. In 1,522 total games, Nowitzki is the Mavericks’ all-time leader in points (31,560), games played (1,522), starts (1,460), minutes (51,368), rebounds (11,489), defensive rebounds (10,021), field goals made (11,169), 3-pointers made (1,982), free throws made (7,240) and blocks (1,281). As a 14-time All-Star and the first European-born player to be named MVP (2006 – 07), Nowitzki led the Dallas Mavericks to its first NBA Championship in 2011.
“Dirk is everything to the Mavs,” said Cuban. “First, 41.21.1. and now lifting his jersey to the rafters. It is a special day for the Mavs and Mavs fans around the world.”
All fans in attendance for the Jan. 5 game will receive Nowitzki memorabilia, including a special edition NFT, commemorative tickets, rally towels and fan clappers.
Fans who arrive early will be able to walk the concourse like a museum with a special showcase from Nowitzki’s personal collection, including All-Star and Championship rings, jerseys, shoes and memorabilia from his history with the Dallas Mavericks.
Following the game, the jersey retirement ceremony highlighting Nowitzki’s greatest moments in Mavericks history with videos, music and entertainment will be held for all fans in attendance.