As teams get ready for training camp, the Dallas Mavericks seemingly still have a roster hole to fill. They lost Jalen Brunson in free agency, and although they have Spencer Dinwiddie ready to step into the starting lineup, they never replaced Brunson’s production.
However, while they may not have found an exact replacement just yet, they do have some guards who could be ready to step up into a larger role. Frank Ntilikina will be back on the squad, and Josh Green showed flashes of great defensive potential last year. But with EuroBasket going on, all the hype is around Dallas’ new two-way guard, Tyler Dorsey.
Dorsey is playing with Team Greece at EuroBasket, teaming up with Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo. He’s been lighting things up, and a Mavericks legend has been taking notice. When asked about Dorsey, Dirk Nowitzki said that he personally welcomed him to the Mavericks.
“I welcomed Tyler to the Mavs, he made a bunch of threes against Italy, I am happy for him. He is a very good shooter, he can also handle the ball. We are excited for him and hope he will have a good camp, but we are excited about him,” said Nowitzki.
So, with the blessing of the greatest Maverick of all time, Dorsey looks primed to make a big-time impact. While he only put up five points in Greece’s most recent game, he dropped 27 and 23 points in consecutive games before that. Those performances included great three-point shooting, as he combined to go 11-of-19 from distance.
In addition, Nowitzki spoke about what it was like playing with Luka Doncic during his final season in the NBA.
Nowitzki on Playing With Doncic
During his playing career in the NBA, Nowitzki got the chance to play with a lot of amazing players. And while he only played with Doncic for one season, his final year and Doncic’s rookie year, he said that the young star was already playing at a level way beyond his years.
“Usually guys come in and they are raw and develop, and with experience and hard work they just take that next level,” explained Nowitzki, “But to me, the way he already reads the game and makes decisions, off the pick-and-roll, when to pass and when to shoot. He is already playing like a 30-year-old. I have been super impressed. From day one, he came in just reading the game, his basketball IQ is just on another level.”
Doncic and Dorsey weren’t the only players Nowitzki praised during his interview, though. He also took the time to talk about Antetokounmpo.
Nowitzki: ‘I’m a Big Fan’
While Antetokounmpo may not be a Maverick, he has quickly turned himself into one of the greatest international players to ever pick up a basketball in the NBA. And considering Nowitzki also falls under that description, he made sure to show some love to Antetokounmpo.
“Unbelievable. When I first saw him, he was this skinny kid. Just to see the growth over him the last couple of years, he has gotten stronger, his skill level improved and he seems very hungry to still get better, to work hard, to play for his country, work in the summer and come as an even better player the next year,” he replied to a question about Antetokounmpo and the Greece national team, “So, it has been a wonderful journey for him. Obviously, MVP and champion already. I am really happy for him. He is a good kid. And he keeps working hard and keeps getting better. I am a big fan.”
Nowitzki is clearly a huge fan of both Antetokounmpo and Doncic and based on his comments regarding Dorsey, Mavericks fans should be excited about the newcomer, too.