San Antonio is focused on finishing the regular season with the momentum that a three-game win streak would bring, even if those three wins were against teams that will not play in the postseason. Earlier this season, Sports Illustrated's Jake Fischer explored how hard it was for Nowitzki to prepare for games as a 40-year-old.
Nowitzki, sitting at 31,540 points with one game left, gave the home crowd another thrill last month by passing Wilt Chamberlain to regain sixth on the career scoring list.
That wasn't it for the 14-time NBA All-Star and one-time champion.
Before the game, the Spurs honored their longtime rival before the contest with a video tribute.
Perhaps one of the most universally well-liked and respected stars in the history of modern American sports, Nowitzki will long be remembered for his commitment to the Dallas Mavericks organization.
Nowitzki, 40, announced after the game that he would retire following the Mavericks' season finale Wednesday at San Antonio. His 21 seasons with a single team are an National Basketball Association record.
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That bucket was a flawless note to close on as Nowitzki checked out one last time to a standing ovation from an appreciative San Antonio crowd. The 7-footer scored 10 points in the opening seven minutes and had 19 points on a season-high 18 shot attempts in the first half.
"Wow. I'm a little overwhelmed, as you would think".
"I can't say enough about what the Spurs did for Dirk [Wednesday night]", Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle said. The pre-game [tribute] video got me really emotional before the game.
Not only did Crawford become the oldest player to put up 50-plus, but he also became the first player to post 50-point games for four different franchises, per ESPN Stats & Information.
Nowitzki went on to thank owner Mark Cuban and the entire Mavericks staff, not only for this season but for the last 21 years.