Dirk Nowitzki made likely his final trip to the Staples Center as a player on Monday night, and Clippers coach Doc Rivers made sure Nowitzki wouldn't leave without the proper recognition. Rivers grabbed the microphone at center court with nine seconds remaining in Los Angeles' 121-112 win, imploring the crowd to give the 21-year veteran a standing ovation before time expired.
“I didn’t really understand much, but that was really humbling," Nowitzki said postgame. "That was an emotional moment. I’m really appreciative.”
Nowitzki hasn't said he will retire at the end of 2018-19, telling reporters he will "wait and see" on Feb. 16. The 14-time All-Star and 2006-07 MVP is averaging a career-low five points and 11.8 minutes per game this season. Nowitzki is No. 7 on the NBA's all-time scoring list and is on pace to pass Wilt Chamberlain before the end of the year.
Dallas is 13th in the West at 26–34 following Monday's defeat. Los Angeles is 7th in the West at 34–28.