Sunday night's NBA Finals game was one of those sporting moments that didn't involve anyone from your home team, yet as a fan of the game and all that is good about it, you found yourself absolutely thrilled for the team that won.
Dirk Nowitzki did it. And he did it as a quiet champion who just wanted to be a champion.
The best writing we've read on the game comes from Yahoo!'s Adrian Wojnarowski, who absolutely kills it. Kind of like Dirk.
My favorite part is when he writes of Dirk leaving the court immediately after the buzzer, which I found strange at the time, but later learned it was because Dirk was simply overcome with emotions and wanted to feel them in privacy.
Eventually, the Mavericks had to drag him back out to take his Finals
MVP trophy, and take his bow on the podium for national television. In
the culminating moment of his career, Nowitzki was sheepish, deferring
and humbled. He seemed so at peace, so contented. He had taken
everything the basketball world could throw his way, and there was no
Bleep You moment on Sunday night. There was no I Told You So.
Dirk doesn’t do endorsements and doesn’t do self-promotion. He
doesn’t care. He never wanted to be a brand. He wanted to be an NBA
The whole tale is worth the read. Congrats to Dirk and the Mavs for doing it the right way and becoming champions.
>>Perseverance pays off for Nowitzki, Mavs [Yahoo!]
UPDATE: And just a reminder: Dirk was selected with the ninth pick in the 1998 NBA Draft. The No. 8 selection? Larry Hughes to Philadelphia! You can have your stinkin' championship, Dallas. We had the Flight Brothers!