Mavs Dirk To Play For Germany In EuroBasket
With the support of a Dallas Mavericks organization that understands the big-picture ramifications here, Dirk Nowitzki is signing on for one final shot at representing the German National Team in international play, this time in EuroBasket 2015, scheduled to be held in his native country.
“I’ve chosen to be in Berlin,” Nowitzki said Thursday at a press conference held by the German Basketball Federation. “I’ve had the whole month of May and used it to gain some distance and enjoy family time ... EuroBasket in our home country is a huge thing, and I look forward to it. I thought it would be a great way to conclude my National Team career.”
Success in EuroBasket can mean an Olympic berth for Germany. Nowitzki last played for the German squad in EuroBasket 2011. The attraction to playing at home is a major factor here.
“If it was anywhere else, at the age of 37 (in June), it probably would have been a no-go for me,” Nowitzki said. “But when I heard that EuroBasket would be played in Berlin, a great basketball city, it was something I'd dreamed about.''
Dirk joked that it was "lucky'' for Germany that the Mavs "lost so early.'' Meanwhile, the Mavs -- even as owner Mark Cuban has long been skeptical of the risks of international play -- have expressed their support of the idea in this case.
“The people that are involved there, if he decides to do it, will understand all the nuances of that and we’ll keep a close eye on it,'' Dallas coach Rick Carlisle said at season's end. "I’ve been to Germany enough times to understand the national feeling with respect to their team and, of course, his importance. Not just on a national basis, but a global basis.”
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