Video: Rick Pitino’s Dirk Nowitzki Story

by June 09, 2011

The Courier-Journal brings us a pretty neat clip of a story former Boston Celtics coach Rick Pitino told about his unfulfilled wish to draft Dirk Nowitzki back in the 1998 NBA Draft (the C’s consolation prize was Paul Pierce.) From the Herald: “It’s fairly well documented that Rick Pitino and the Celtics were hot on drafting Dirk Nowitzki in the 1998 NBA Draft. The German-born Nowitzki was well known in his country, but had only been exposed in the States while playing in the Nike Hoop Summit the summer of the draft. Just the same, Pitino thought he had him wrapped up at No. 10, and that not too many other teams knew about him. Of course, he was wrong. The Milwaukee Bucks drafted him No. 9, right before the Celtics, and immediately traded him to the Mavericks, where he has blossomed into one of the best players in the NBA. The Celtics landed on their feet, drafting Paul Pierce with the No. 10 pick. Pitino recently talked about missing out on Nowitzki during a press conference at Louisville. And the tale he tells is an interesting one.”