Amid all the uncertainty going into the weekend, one thing was certain: Dirk was going to have fun with it. The UberMan was present from the Mavs' draft war room to the batter's box. He's also a presence when it comes to Rondo news, Marion news and Dwight news. Dirk talk plus Video Visits - in Sunday Mavs Donuts!
DONUT 1: Nowitzki Pre-Draft Explanation ...
"Assistant GM'' Dirk Nowitzki was pretty straightforward with what he wanted the Dallas Mavericks to do on draft night.
“We want to get better.”
But then he went into a little more detail on specifically what Dallas needed to address.
“We could use a point guard,'' he said. "We could definitely use some shooting.”
Maybe not coincidentally, Shane Larkin, who the Mavericks ended up selecting (after two trades down), just so happens to be a point guard. And he just so happens to be a point guard who can really shoot the ball. While he was the fourth point guard on Dallas' board, he’s arguably the best shooting point guard in the class.
A day after the Thursday selection process, a Dirk Video Visit reviewing the work (and the non-playoff season):
DONUT 2: How’d he know? ...
But that’s not all.
In a media mock draft, Nowitzki previewed the draft by pinpointing Larkin to Dallas.
“I can’t guarantee that we’ll keep the 13th pick, but I do like Shane Larkin,'' he said. "He’s a pretty gritty point guard and he looked like a great leader when I watched him lead Miami to the Sweet 16.”
DONUT 3: Did Dirk Influence the Selection? ...
Considering those comments and the fact that Dirk was in the War Room with Cuban, Carlisle, Nelson and company, it’s tempting to think that his interest in Larkin led to the Mavericks selecting him.
A few hours before the draft, Nowitzki claimed he was more of a fly on the wall.
“It’s not like today I’m going to be making decisions in this room,'' he said. "It’s not like I watch enough college to make an educated decision. But I just want to be in the room and see what’s going on, have some pizza and talk some hoops.”
It looks like Dirk’s college scouting is more advanced than he gives himself credit for. ... though in truth, we're told the Larkin pick was largely Carlisle-driven.
We've got Mavs Draft night covered in depth here.
DONUT 4: Our breaking story on the Mavs and Rondo ...
Dirk's name has popped up in supplemental coverage of our original Saturday morning exclusive on Dallas' talks with Boston centering on a Rajon Rondo trade. That info is here ...
Meanwhile, Dallas has taken a position on Chris Paul (or rather, has had Paul explain his position to them) and is also investigating bids on point guards Tyreke Evans and Brandon Jennings – and we’ve got the scoop on what’s happening with all four.
DONUT 5: Reaching out to Howard ...
As noted here, Dirk said that he contacted Dwight Howard in an early attempt to recruit him to the Mavs.
“I reached out to him. I told him we would love to have him. That’s really about it. It’s not like we call each other every day. I didn’t write him a letter.”
DONUT 6: Dwight’s Response ...
When asked how Howard responded to the gesture Dirk remained vague.
“He’s doing well,” Nowitzki said with a smile. “I think he’s weighing his options. It wasn’t anything newsworthy. I’m sure he has a couple meetings set up.”
We now also know that Nowitzki will join Mark Cuban in a scheduled Tuesday meeting in LA with their No. 1 free-agent target, Howard, who will also meet this week with Houston, Atlanta, Golden State and the Lakers.
Nowitzki was not afraid to utilize a pretty strong statement when asked about the notion of playing with Howard.
“To me, when he’s healthy, he’s the most dominant big man in the league. He showed it at the end of the season when he was right. He can dominate at both ends of the floor. He’s a beast.”
DONUT 7: A potential Good-bye to Marion ...
Signing Howard would very likely involve the Mavericks parting ways with Dirk’s championship teammate Shawn Marion. Nowitzki talked about the possibility of having to play without Marion.
“I think we’ll cross that bridge if we get there. If Dwight really says he’d love to be here then that’s something we have to address then. As of now, I don’t know if we have to address that. I’ve loved playing with all my championship teammates. We had a great team and great chemistry. I was sad seeing all of them go. It would be the same if we parted ways with ‘Trix. We’ve been through a lot together. We’re the same age, came into the league together. We’ve seen a lot together and obviously we won the ring together.”
The events (or non-events) of Saturday mean Trix declined Dallas' invitation to exercise his ETO. And yes, this figures to lead toward a fond farewell. The story here.
DONUT 8: Eggs in baskets ...
Of course Nowitzki wants the Mavs to sign a big name player like Howard, but he claims that such a plan cannot be the end-all-be-all for the team.
“We can’t put all our eggs in one basket,'' he said. "We need to have multiple things going. If Dwight or whoever says no then we have to have some other issues. We don’t want to get too excited for one thing.”
Here's a Video Visit with Mark Cuban on the subject of summer shopping:
Dirk's right. There are indeed other options. But the first order of business is continuing to "un-commit.''
That explains Dallas' QO decision on Collison and Roddy B, too, which DB.com breaks down here.
DONUT 9: Questions and answers ...
We answer tons of questions and kick around a skillion ideas on DB.com Boards. Lots of issues are answered, too, if you comb through DB.com Archives.
DONUT 10: Thanks to Red Rock! ...
Our North Dallas hangout for sports and live music? It's Red Rock Bar & Grill! They help make DB.com what it is ... thanks, guys!
DONUT 11: Plan ... D? E? F? ...
What if Plan A doesn't succeed? Homers though we are, brace yourself for a Tough-Love Blueprint on what the next steps for the Mavs must be.
DONUT 12: The Final Word ...
Asked about his post-playing career plans, Nowitzki cracked a few jokes about the limitations he claims to have.
“I’m not sure I’m made for TV,'' he said. "My face is more made for radio….I’m not sure where it will take me. I’m sure Cubes would love to keep me around for something. Maybe I’ll feel out a little bit of everything once I’m done.”
But Dirk's not going to be done for a while ... though if you read David Lord's brilliant and risky trick of how Dallas could cut Dirk and bring him back ... well, if Dallas takes this option (today and today only) ... Dirk would be a non-Mav for just an instant. Read this. It's an NBA Mavs Lab Experiment you can only get on DallasBasketball.com.
Whatever Dirk does in the future, we're quite certain it won't be professional baseball.