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Changes continues for Mavs as Carlisle steps down, Dirk steps in

Sports Editor

Dirk Nowitzki
Dirk Nowitzki

The upheaval within the Dallas Mavericks organization continues as head coach Rick Carlisle announced he was stepping down and former star Dirk Nowitzki was hired as a special advisor to the franchise.

Both developments come two days after longtime General Manager and President of Basketball Operations Donnie Nelson and the franchise agreed to part ways on Wednesday.

On Thursday, Carlisle, the winningest coach in franchise history, announced he was stepping down. He was hired on May 9, 2008 and recently completed his 13th season with Dallas. He posted a record of 555-478 (.537) with the club and led the Mavericks to the postseason nine times in his 13 seasons at the helm, including the franchise’s first World Championship in 2011.

“Rick informed me today about his decision to step down as head coach,” said owner Mark Cuban. “On top of being a tremendous basketball coach, he was also a friend and a confidant.

“Rick helped us bring the O’Brien Trophy to Dallas and those are memories I will always cherish. I want to thank Rick for all he gave this franchise and this city. We wish him all the best.”

Carlisle, who won a title as a player with Boston in 1986, is one of only 14 individuals to win an NBA championship as both a player and a head coach. He moved into 15th place on the NBA’s all-time wins list in 2020-21, passing Cotton Fitzsimmons (832) with career win No. 833 vs. Cleveland on May 7, 2021.

On Friday, the Mavs announced that Nowitzki was coming out of retirement to serve as a special advisor to the franchise. Nowitzki will assist with the hiring of both a general manager and head coach as well as consult on other front office decisions.

“Mark Cuban approached me about a role as special advisor and I am happy to support my Mavs,” said Nowitzki. “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.”

Nowitzki is the sole player in league history to play 21 seasons with the same franchise. He led the Mavericks to their only NBA championship in 2011 en route to being named Finals MVP.

The 14-time All-Star is the Mavericks’ all-time leader in points (31,560), rebounds (11,489), defensive rebounds (10,021), field goals made (11,169), 3-pointers made (1,982), free throws made (7,240), blocks (1,281), games (1,522), starts (1,460) and minutes (51,368). He finished his career with averages of 20.7 points, 7.5 rebounds and 2.4 assists in 33.8 minutes per game.

Stay tuned to Texas Metro News for this developing story.

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Written By

Dorothy Gentry is the sports editor for the Texas Metro News.

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