DONUT 1: "In my opinion, he's a top 10 player in NBA history.'' -- Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle on Dirk Nowitzki.
Now THERE'S a way for a coach to fill a down week with some barroom-brawl talk!
The full quote, from a Monday national TV appearance:
"In my opinion, he's a top 10 player in NBA history.'' because of the uniqueness of his game and how he's carried this franchise on his back for over a decade. He's just right. He's leading the team. His shot-making is great. He's passing the ball great. He's one of the guys that's directing traffic for us defensively."
It's futile to truly attempt to winnow down the list. There are a handful of guys who define the sport ... for me that list begins with Jordan and Wilt, continues to Kareem, Russell and Magic ... and then come legends like Robertson, Bird, Hakeem, Shaq ... and yeah, right around there, Dirk is in there somewhere with Moses, Duncan, Malone, West, Baylor, Barkley.
Top 10? Top 30? Either is good enough for me -- and I bet a major boost to The UberMan's confidence to hear his coach -- a close friend and former teammate of Larry Bird's -- announce it as fact.
DONUT 2: Carlisle's pronouncement is at least enough to shut down the Idiocracy that sees Nowitzki as just another soft whitey who shoots 3's, right?
Welcome to the Idiocracy, Charley Rosen.
I am gainfully employed by Fox, as is Charley. So maybe I should shut up. (Indeed, I may be the only sportswriter in the world who is gainfully employed by Fox AND by ESPN, so many I should double-shut-up.)
But I cannot help myself as I review the thoughts of the likes of Rosen regarding Dirk, especially when in recent years he's opted to compare The UberMan unfavorably with Pau Gasol. Like here. And here.
"Gasol gets a slight edge,'' Charley says.
Dirk ranks behind Manu and Pau as international players because he "Can do everything except lead his team to a championship.''
Instead of me shutting up, it's fun watching Nowitzki cause his critics to do so.
DONUT 3: Congratulations are in order for Tyson Chandler, a freshly-minted member of the NBA's All-Defensive Team.
Chandler, who recently finished third in the NBA in the Defensive Player of the Year voting, becomes just the second Mav ever honored in that way, joining Derek Harper.
"Thanks to everyone for the love,'' Chandler tweets, "but special thanks to my teammates for helping me make All-Defensive team."
Well, it's a team effort, of course. But TY -- even more than the 10.1 points, 9.4 rebounds and 1.1 blocks during the regular season -- is providing a heart-and-soul center to the Dallas defense since being acquired for nothing more than The DUST Chip.
Congratulations to TY!
DONUT 4: As you know, it's an ancient tradition here at DallasBasketball.com to hand out "The Dirkie'' for the Player of the Game – but only after wins, because we are spoiled that way.
"The Dirkie,'' of course, is named after the greatest player in franchise history, just as "The Oscar'' is named after Oscar Van Der Slott, one of our finest actors. (Look it up!)
So DB.com Boards superstar "Grumpy'' did the math: In the 2010-11 season, who has the most "Dirkies'' resting on their mantel?
The tally is here.
It's worth your dime. And believe me when I say DB com will do everything we can to earn that dime and retain your trust.
Go Mavs and Go Premium!
DONUT 6: Time to clarify my position on the Mavs "feelings'' regarding Jason Terry and the "business'' of Jason Terry.
This is a wonderful moment, strategically speaking, for Jet to announce that he'd like to be a Mav for life. And the quotes from GM Donnie Nelson on ESPNDallas -- "the feeling is mutual'' are warm-and-fuzzy.
But today's warm-and-fuzzy will eventually be tomorrow's business decision involving a 33-year-old player who will eventually decline who is playing on what will be a $10.7 mil expiring contract.
This is no time to be anti-Jet, and I'm not anti-Jet. I'm simply pointing out that "feelings'' after beating the Lakers and advancing to the WCF on the strength of a wonderful Jason Terry performance is different than "business,'' which is what the Mavs will be faced with, say, next trade deadline.
DONUT 7: Speaking of all the things you get at DB.com ...have you gotten your "Limitless'' film review from our man Shawn Marion yet?
DONUT 8: There is a whole 'nother world, a whole 'nother level, of Mavs fandom on DB.com Boards! If you haven't been, you owe yourself a visit and a membership there!
Let me sneak in one more piece of advice, a ticket tip from
: As the games get more and more expensive, the services fees on many sites really start coming into play. So make sure you check the fine print when you are comparing prices. Often, some outlets are mixing in 10 or 20 percent service fees, while MavCowTickets
is giving you the same ticket with NO service fee ... and the personal service that Ryan has provided DB.com readers for years!
Ryan gets a skillion contacts from you every day (which is great!) but as you call, save yourself time and questions and check the service fees on the other outlets' tickets. Oh, and make sure you put "DB.com'' in the order notes, too!
And come give the DB.com Dallas Mavericks Facebook page a like, will ya? Click that rectangle!
DONUT 9: It's shaking down: The Mavs, as you know the home team in the WCF, open the Western Finals on Sunday at the AAC if OKC/Memphis goes six games or fewer. If that series stretches to seven, it looks like the WCF starts Tuesday.
If it all starts Sunday, Games 1 and 2 will be Sunday and Tuesday in Dallas. If Tuesday is the start-up day, Games 1 and 2 will apparently be Tuesday and Thursday at the AAC.
DONUT 10: Carlisle will meet the media during the lunch hour today, and of course DB.com will be there will an All-Access Practice Pass presented to you this afternoon. (We'll also live-tweet everything, so follow me on Twitter at FishSports along with
Michael Dugat and Kevin Brolan, too!
Interesting: Today's is an "optional'' workout for Mavs players. I suppose there might be somebody with family in town (Mother's Day extended) or somebody with a dentist's appointment up at McKinneyDentist.com or something but ... how many Mavs are going to not be at a pst-Lakers, pre-WCF workout?
Precious few, I would think.
DONUT 11: That logo you see above? The answer, Dear Mavericks Wear Wearer, is yes. I'm working on a project that will once again put the DB.com Store in cahoots with the Mavs themselves. Mavs-approved. DB.com-approved. Just like all our other swag in The Mavs DB.com Store!
DONUT 12: A lingering picture from Dirk's Sunday press conference: Before the cameras start rolling and before the star player takes his seat at the dais, NBA workers scramble to get everything looking just right. The background banner must be hung. The microphone level must be tested. Oh, and a Gatorade bottle must be strategically placed next to the microphone, as if the athlete is "replentishing'' himself right there on live TV.
"Hey,'' Nowitzki said, looking down at the prop bottle set before him, "Gatorade doesn't pay me, man."
Yes, Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks have themselves a bit of attitude this year.