Nowitzki’s career has a Mount Rushmore feel to it

Posted Saturday, Apr. 12, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
A

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle said a mouthful this week when he declared Dirk Nowitzki a top-12 NBA player all time.

Let that sink in for a minute.

The Dunking Deutschman top 12 all time?

The hooping Shaggy Dirk?

Wow!

Certainly, Carlisle’s comments came in conjunction with Nowitzki’s passing Oscar Robertson to move into the top 10 among all-time scorers, with prospects of moving higher in the next year.

Definitely call it recency bias.

Clearly, there is some partiality.

Top 20 no doubt, and maybe top 15.

But top 12 is a stretch in my opinion, considering the likes of Magic, Bird, Jordan, Wilt, Kareem, Russell, Duncan, Shaq, Kobe, Olajuwon, Moses Malone, Isaiah, LeBron and Dr. J. And that’s not even considering Barkley, Karl Malone, Allen Iverson or Bob Cousy.

What is not in question is Nowitzki’s place in DFW sports history, of which he is top four all time.

If there were Mount Rushmore of DFW sports figures, Dirk would be on the side of the mountain next to Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith and Roger Staubach.

That’s the four. That’s it.

We don’t even need to discuss the presence of the three Cowboys on the list. Do we?

Titles. Titles. Titles, not stature in the community, as well as places in NFL history.

Don’t be silly.

You may ask where are the Rangers on the list?

You tell me.

The only person who deserves consideration is Nolan Ryan. And while he did a lot during his time here as a player, Ryan came Arlington when he was 137 years old, to paraphrase a line from the movie Coming to America.

How about Mike Modano of the Stars?

If there was anyone who has a legitimate case to be included in the hallowed top four, it’s Modano, the greatest American-born player in NHL history and the man who led the Stars to the Stanley Cup title in 1999.

He is an American hockey legend.

Modano will forever be the face of Stars hockey in DFW.

But it’s the diminishing presence and significance of the Stars and hockey in DFW that keeps him off this list. That is a shame and a disservice to his greatness and impact.

But it is what it is.

Getting back to Nowitzki.

Appreciate him now.

Take stock of what you are witnessing.

It’s not just about the numbers. It’s how he has revolutionized the game and the way basketball looks at big men.

But certainly the numbers can’t be overlooked.

He is the 10th-leading scorer in NBA history and he can easily climb to seven next year, passing Olajuwon, Elvin Hayes and Moses Malone.

How high he goes after that is up to Father Time and health, with Wilt and Shaq at five and six. It will take a couple of more years for that.

But Nowitzki is special.

Not top 12 all time, but Mount Rushmore in DFW for sure.

Clarence E. Hill Jr., 817-390-7760 Twitter: @clarencehilljr

Looking for comments?

We welcome your comments on this story, but please be civil. Do not use profanity, hate speech, threats, personal abuse, images, internet links or any device to draw undue attention. Our policy requires those wishing to post here to use their real identity.

Our commenting policy | Facebook commenting FAQ | Why Facebook?





Wednesday, August 27Full Scoreboard
St. Louis1Top 9th | Box
Pittsburgh3@theBallpark | TV: MLB N, FSN-MW, ROOT-PIT
Texas 8/27 3:40 PM ET
Seattle TV: FSN-SW, ROOT-NW
Tampa Bay 8/27 7:05 PM ET
Baltimore TV: Sun Sports, MASN 2
Washington 8/27 7:05 PM ET
Philadelphia TV: MASN, CSN-PHI
Boston 8/27 7:07 PM ET
Toronto TV: NESN, SNET
NY Yankees 8/27 7:08 PM ET
Detroit TV: YES, FSN-DET
Chicago Cubs 8/27 7:10 PM ET
Cincinnati TV: CSN-CHI, FSN-OH
Atlanta 8/27 7:10 PM ET
NY Mets TV: SPSO, WPIX
Cleveland 8/27 8:10 PM ET
Chicago WSox TV: STO, WCIU
Oakland 8/27 8:10 PM ET
Houston TV: CSN-CA, CSN-HOU
Minnesota 8/27 8:10 PM ET
Kansas City TV: FSN-N, FSN-KC
Milwaukee 8/27 9:10 PM ET
San Diego TV: FSN-WI, FSN-SD
Los Angeles 8/27 9:40 PM ET
Arizona TV: SportsNet LA, FSN-AZ
Miami 8/27 10:05 PM ET
LA Angels TV: FSN-W
Colorado 8/27 10:15 PM ET
San Francisco TV: ROOT-RM, CSN-BA
Full Scoreboard
Wednesday, August 27Full Scoreboard
No games today
Full Scoreboard
Week 5Full Scoreboard
Thursday
Atlanta 6:00 PM ET
Jacksonville TV: CW69, WUPA
Detroit 7:00 PM ET
Buffalo TV: WXYZ7, WKBW
Indianapolis 7:00 PM ET
Cincinnati TV: WNDY, CBS12
Kansas City 7:00 PM ET
Green Bay TV: NBC, KCTV
St. Louis 7:00 PM ET
Miami TV: CBS4
NY Jets 7:00 PM ET
Philadelphia TV: NFL Network, CBS2, 6ABC
New England 7:30 PM ET
NY Giants TV: WBZ
Carolina 7:30 PM ET
Pittsburgh TV: Panthers TV, KDKA, CBS2
Washington 7:30 PM ET
Tampa Bay TV: NBC4, CSN-DC, WFLA
Chicago 8:00 PM ET
Cleveland TV: FOX32, WKYC
Denver 8:00 PM ET
Dallas TV: KUSA, KTVT, CBS11
San Francisco 8:00 PM ET
Houston TV: KPIX 5, KTRK
Baltimore 8:00 PM ET
New Orleans TV: WBAL, CST
Minnesota 8:00 PM ET
Tennessee TV: KARE 11, WKRN
Seattle 10:00 PM ET
Oakland TV: NFL Network, Q13FOX, KTVU
Arizona 10:00 PM ET
San Diego TV: ABC-15, KFMB
Full Scoreboard
Wednesday, August 27Full Scoreboard
No games today
Full Scoreboard