The Dirk Diggler has become the 7th player in NBA history to reach 28,000 points on Wednesday April 1st. This isn’t an April Fool’s joke. He has expanded his resume and made an even stronger case for a first ballot HOFer and one of the best PF of the game. He is a 13-time All-Star, one-time MVP in the 2006-2007 season, 2010-2011 champion and Finals MVP, 12 All-NBA selections, 4 All-NBA first team selections, 7th most points in NBA history, etc. The list can go on and on. But, are all of these accolades enough to dub “The Dunking Deutschman” as the best Power Forward of all time? Is he better than other PFs like “The Big Fundamentals” (Tim Duncan), “The Mailman” (Karl Malone), “The Big Round Mound of Rebound” (Charles Barkley), or even “The Big Ticket” (Kevin Garnett)? No.
Thats not a knock against Nowitzki however. Dirk is an offensive phenomenon and has transformed the position for the foreseeable future. However, for all of his wonderful offensive greatness, the numbers don’t lie. Dirk has never been great on defense. Especially in his twilight years, he has been a defensive liability. Even during his prime, he was only above average but not good on defense. That is why he cannot be put as a better PF that the ones listed above. His entire game has been predicated on offense and for good reason. He has reached the pinnacle of efficiency once while scoring 25 points per game and has almost reached those coveted shooting marks multiple times during his career. As a Mavericks, it pains me to put the greatest Maverick of all time as “only” the 5th best PF of all time. But his defense has never been up to par with the PF mentioned above and that is what has held him back from snatching the PF crown from his Texas rival Tim Duncan.
-Brian Nguyen LRHS