The Dallas Mavericks will need power forward Dirk Nowitzki to be healthy if they’re going to have a winning season and make it to the playoffs. Last year and the year before he struggled with injuries. All the people doubting Nowitzki and questioning whether he is still among the league’s elite has Dirk motivated for the 2013 season.
From ESPN Dallas:
“Competitors, they always find ways to motivate themselves,” said Nowitzki, who averaged 17.3 points and 6.8 rebounds in his down 2012-13 campaign, including 18.9 points and 7.7 rebounds after the All-Star break. “When I first got here, ‘He can’t do it, he’s not ready for the NBA,’ then once I established himself, ‘He can’t win it all.’ So I think there’s always stuff you can use as motivation and competitors use it the right way.
“So yeah, I’m fired up and hopefully I can show it and still put up a decent season.”
Dirk also added during the media day on Monday that he feels good. Nowitzki said that he has been working out since May, the earliest he has ever started working out for a season.
“I feel good now,” Nowitzki said during Monday’s media day on the eve of training camp. “Going into camp, I did a lot of work. I started working out in May, probably the earliest for a long, long time. Hopefully I’ll feel good going into the season and I can stay injury-free.
“But I feel now better than I have at any point last year, so I think that’s very encouraging to myself, it’s very important also from a mental standpoint and hopefully I can show it.”
The Mavs brought in Monta Ellis to be a second scoring threat so the offense doesn’t rest solely on Nowitzki’s shoulders. They’ve also brought in veteran point guard Jose Calderon to run the offense.