Dallas Mavericks legend Dirk Nowitzki rejoins franchise to help find new coach, GM

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After a week of bombshells that shook up the Dallas Mavericks, the team announced on Friday that beloved former player Dirk Nowitzki will serve as a special adviser to the franchise.

“Mark Cuban approached me about a role as special advisor and I am happy to support my Mavs,” said Nowitzki according to the news release. “Donnie Nelson and Rick Carlisle were both mentors and played huge roles in my career and the success of this franchise, and I am going to miss them. It is important for me now to join Mark and contribute as much as I can as we move forward.”

The move comes after it was announced earlier this week that both long-time general manager Donnie Nelson and head coach Rick Carlisle are leaving the team.

The New York Times Sports tweeted that the Mavericks icon will be assisting in the search for both a new GM and head coach.

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“Mark approached me and asked me to help out and of course I said yes,” Nowitzki said. “Any way I can help my Mavs, I’m in.”

The dominoes began to fall after the Mavericks lost in the first round of the NBA playoffs to the Los Angeles Clippers. On Monday, The Athletic released an article stating from unnamed sources that there was tension surrounding Mavs superstar Luka Doncic and Dallas’ director of quantitative research and development Haralabos Voulgaris, a former professional gambler.

Cuban denied the report, but then Nelson, the longtime GM who is credited with finding both Nowitzki and Doncic, was fired. Then Carlisle, who led the Mavericks to their only NBA championship in 2011, quit with two years left on his contract.

Doncic, when speaking to the media in Slovenia — where he will play in an exhibition game against Croatia in Olympic qualifier — spoke briefly about Nelson’s departure.

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“It was kind of tough to me,” he said. “I really like Donnie. I know him since I was a kid and he was the one that drafted me. It was tough for me seeing that, but I’m not the one making the decisions there.”

Nowitzki played for 21 seasons with the Mavs and helped the team to their first and only NBA championship in 2011. He’s the all-time Mavericks leader in points (31,560), which puts hims sixth on the NBA scoring list, in between Michael Jordan and Wilt Chamberlain.

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