Dallas Mavericks

Only one reasonable explanation for ESPYs Dallas Mavericks’ snubs

What are you doing, ESPN?

The sports network held its annual ESPY Awards Wednesday night and Dallas Mavericks’ fans were left with an air ball.

The broadcast included two inexplicable snubs to Mavericks stars Dirk Nowitzki and Luka Doncic.

Nowitzki was left out of a tribute to recently retired athletes despite the Hall of Famer famously retiring after the final game at American Airlines Center of his 21-year career.

ESPN honored New England Patriots’ Rob Gronkowski, skier Lindsey Vonn, and the Miami Heat’s Dwyane Wade, all of whom retired in the past year.

The only reasonable explanation for Nowitzki’s exclusion is he declined the invitation because he’s with his family in Germany. Mavs’ owner Mark Cuban didn’t know if ESPN invited Nowitzki.

One thing we know for sure? Dirk doesn’t care about an ESPY honor. But Mavs fans sure would have appreciated it.

In fact, Nowitzki’s only recent social media activity was a hilarious post on Twitter a day after the ESPYs.

“We took a family photo today and I secretly sucked in my belly for the first time … don’t judge,” Nowitzki posted on Twitter. “I know you have all done it!”

The other Mavs’ snub is even more head-scratching. The NBA’s Rookie of the Year Luka Doncic, who earned 98 of 100 votes for the honor, was inexplicably not even one of four finalist for breakthrough athlete. In fact, Trae Young, the Atlanta Hawks’ star and former Oklahoma Sooners’ phenom, won it. Perhaps Doncic declined an invitation as well. He has kept a low social media profile of late.

No matter what, it’s ridiculous.

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Stefan Stevenson has been covering sports for the Star-Telegram since 1997. He spent five years covering TCU athletics, which included two BCS bowls, two trips to the college World Series and the move to the Big 12. He has covered the Texas Rangers since 2014 and started reporting on the Dallas Cowboys in 2016.