6-10 championships. That’s what they said. The Big 3 boldly stated that they could win 6+ championships with the Miami Heat. Everybody including themselves called this season a failure without a championship. I guess that’s what this season was for them a big failure.
When the finals rolled around, the veteran Mavericks were the underdogs. Rick Carlisle said it best, ” We don’t run fast or jump high, but we have a great team.”
A great team. That’s what wins championships. Not the superstar power of three players and a few points off the bench. No. It takes a Hall of Famer committed since the day he was drafted, to win a championship in Dallas. It takes a 6th man who is more clutch then a two-time MVP in this league. It takes a gritty interior defender who dives for loose balls everywhere they go. It takes an underdog foreign point guard who lights up everybody unexpectedly. It takes a veteran point guard with the best passing skills in NBA history. It takes a veteran forward who dreams of championships every night when he is sleeping. It takes a coach who loves his players and will stop at nothing to get them the championship they deserve. That’s what makes up a championship team.
That also carries over into the legacy conversation. Lebron James will never have a legacy as great as Dirk. Never. He may be more athletic, and more talented, but he played 7 years and needed a championship. So he took the easy route and that was it. He was in a better position for glory. Dirk went through 12 hectic, championship short seasons, he never doubted his team, or teammates, he never thought of leaving. Even when Steve Nash left he never called out the front office or did anything to jeopardise his legacy. He stuck with Dallas for 13 years and eventually won a championship. This championship that he won yesterday will mean more then any that Lebron ever wins. He won it over Lebron, he won it with the team he was drafted by, and he did it all by himself.
Dirk really showed what the heart of a champion meant. He played sick and scored 21. He was the lone star of a team without his number two scorer, in Caron Butler. He outplayed everybody on the court even two top 3 players in the NBA. Dirk will be remembered as a champion, like no other. He has no bad rep on him, he has not had a bad season in 13 years. Every year has been consistent and stat filled. Up and coming players should look to players like Dirk instead of Lebron. Players who don’t let their team down when it counts most, players who don’t call themselves the king and then don’t win a championship in 8 years, players who take the easy route to a championship. Not players like Lebron but like Dirk.
When we take a look at Dirk’s career we can really see how complete it has been. An MVP, a finals MVP, an NBA championship, recreating the power forward position, developing the 2nd most unstoppable shot in NBA history, scoring 20 or more points for 10+ years, 10 time all star, leading the Mavericks in points. I mean from top to bottom Dirk Nowitzki is a prize possession for this league. When we look back at this series we won’t be looking back at Lebron’s failure but Dirk’s great and much deserved success.