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I am admitting it: I am not a great basketball connoisseur. In fact, I know very little about the sport. However, I always knew Dirk Nowitzki and remember very well when he started to slowly but steadily became one of the greatest basketball players ever. And the funny thing is that this lanky boy born in the small town of Würzburg in Germany still seems to be that normal guy from next door. Maybe, this is his secret apart from his strong will to win through hard work. No doubt that today, the 2,13 meters tall Dirk Nowitzki is considered to be a legend and one of the best players in the history of basketball.

Due to him announcing the formal end of his impressive career as an active basketball player, there was a lot to read about Dirk Nowitzki in the press lately. Videos on Youtube showed his moving goodbye after his very last game with the Dallas Mavericks.In another video, people who accompanied Dirk Nowitzki show him their respect by saying goodbye to him in their own words, among them fans, teammates, team managers, coaches and also his wife Jessica Olsson. They all agree that despite his great success on the basketball court, Dirk Nowitzki has remained a thoroughly down-to-earth and modest guy who always showed a lot of respect for others. He never thought of himself as particularly exceptional. Well yeah, he is good at sinking balls in a basket, so what? Others would probably be willing to die for such a talent. “German Wunderkind” or “Dirkules” are among his nicknames. But Dirk Nowitzki doesn’t leave a doubt about the fact that what he achieved needed hard work. Talent was not everything, he needed to understand that message when he came to the US in 1998 and joined the team he was going to play for and with for 21 seasons: the Dallas Mavericks.

“All I wanted is to get better,“ says Dirk Nowitzki and his mantra speaks for itself. He strongly believes that without hard work, he would never have come so far. Talent alone is in his opinion not enough. It is said that he revolutionized basketball. However, Dirk Nowitzki never made it into a big deal, he was just himself. Especially the beginning of his career with the Dallas Mavericks was anything but easy. The “German Wunderkind” was finally to show performance, the pressure that weighed on him must have been immense. Dirk Nowitzki has held the state and has even grown from it. Even though he felt enormous pressure, he used the momentum to raise instead of pulling back.

The German newspaper „Die Süddeutsche“ made a podcast about him and summed up his career as follows: “With 31.560 points in the main round, the 40-year-old Würzburger is the number six scorer of the eternal scoreboard. He was invited 14 times to the prestigious All-Star team, won the 2011 title and was voted Most Valuable Player of the Final. Throughout his career, Nowitzki remained loyal to the Dallas Mavericks, a novelty in basketball history. Even opposing fans have celebrated him for his lifetime achievement. Despite all this enthusiasm and record, despite his high status in this sport, which he has revolutionized with his style of play, he has always remained down-to-earth and modest.“

Dirk Nowitzki says: “Never think that you already know or could possibly know everything. There is always more and better.“ His fans love him for so much determination and so much humanity. He has become an idol, a role model for kids and teens who queued after each game to get a signature from “Dirkules”. He patiently signed autographs, giving everyone a smile. He is “all time great,” as the Americans say.

Now Dirk Nowitzki begins a new phase of life. He wants to go and infect others with his charm and his effortless willpower. A talk by one of the greatest athletes of all time seems like a gift. After that, that’s for sure, no one will want to stick to old patterns any longer. That’s the irresistable spell of Dirk Nowitzki. Book Dirk Nowitzki as Speaker for your conference and contact us via oliver.stoldt@premium-speakers.com.

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