If one were cynical, one might say that Mavericks’ owner Mark Cuban had taken some hard public relations hits in the past 72 hours and needed a win, so he played the best card he had.
Maybe, maybe not, but either way the result is a good thing — Dirk Nowitzki is back with the Mavericks organization.
He will serve as a special advisor to Cuban, including having a hand in choosing the next general manager and coach for the team.
The Dallas Mavericks announced today that Dirk Nowitzki will serve as a special advisor to the franchise.
Nowitzki will assist with the hiring of both a general manager and head coach and consult on other front office decisions. pic.twitter.com/V7v6fOp5dj
— Mavs PR (@MavsPR) June 18, 2021
“Mark Cuban approached me about a role as special advisor and I am happy to support my Mavs,” Nowitzki said in a statement. “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.”
Even with Nowitzki in the mix, it’s going to be interesting watching the Mavericks hire their next GM. Cuban is very involved in basketball decisions and has the final say over every move — as is his right as the owner — but that is a different dynamic than the top GMs are used to. Plus, part of the recent shakeup in Dallas is how much Haralabos Voulgaris — officially the Director of Quantitative Research and Development for the Mavs — has Cuban’s ear or is at least perceived to have his ear. Top GM candidates, people with experience and options, may balk at coming to a situation where they do not have the hammer to make the final decision on basketball moves and rather have to sell their idea to Cuban.
Dallas has a roster with a top-10 player in Luka Doncic, a player that a championship team can be built around. However, with Kristaps Porzingis being owed more than $100 million over the next three years and Doncic about to sign a $200 million supermax extension, there is limited roster flexibility. In addition, as we have seen in the past few days, Doncic isn’t afraid to flex his muscle as team superstar.
It is going to be a wild offseason in Dallas — and now Nowitzki is in the mix.