DALLAS – The greatest player in these NBA playoffs walked out of the locker room late Tuesday dressed in slacks and a striped shirt, his blonde, tussled hair still a little damp. Dirk Nowitzki(notes) looked like he had just put in 40 minutes on the treadmill after clocking his eight hours at the local brokerage. He'd delivered one of the most stunning big-game shooting performances this league has seen, and he might as well have been another 9-to-5er, hustling out of the gym to grab a $3 Bud Light before happy hour ends.
After all these years, there's still little about Nowitzki that intimidates. He's the NBA star you want as your friend, the goofy German who hums David Hasselhoff tunes at the free-throw line. Maybe that's why so many people have refused to admit the obvious for so long: The guy is a cold-blooded killer.
The sports world has no choice but to recognize his greatness now. Nowitzki swept the champion Los Angeles Lakers out of the playoffs, took eight days off, thenRead More »from Nowitzki's 48-point show opens West finals