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Monday, September 12th, 2011 at 10:36 am  |  18 responses

Dirk Nowitzki’s Team Germany Ousted From Eurobasket


After winning an NBA title, most players spend the following few months soaking it in, celebrating and partying and traveling and whatnot. No doubt, Dirk Nowitzki did all of that, but the big man also decided to suit up for Team Germany in this month’s Eurobasket, hoping to help his country earn a spot in the next Olympics. Unfortunately, that won’t be the case.

Nowitzki’s team fell 84-75 to Lithuania on Sunday, a loss that eliminated Germany from the qualifying tournament and will also leave them without a spot in the 2012 Winter Games.

Here are some details, via ESPN:

Dirk Nowitzki hugged his teammates, embraced his opponents and accepted the applause of the fans who have celebrated every step of his long and devoted stint with his team.

But unlike in June, he walked off the court with his head bowed and his dreams broken. Germany, requiring victory by 11 points or more, was eliminated from EuroBasket with an 84-75 defeat to Lithuania on Sunday as the tournament hosts progressed into the quarterfinals.

In front of 11,000 screaming, partisan supporters, a Lithuania loss would have brought devastation for an entire nation. For Nowitzki, the end of his hopes of playing in another Olympic Games, this time in London, was no less painful.

He had 16 points and 11 rebounds but could not provide the kind of heroics that helped carry the Dallas Mavericks to the NBA title three months ago. By the end, quite simply, he had nothing left to give.

“Overall, I don’t feel I was in the kind of shape I needed to be in here,” he acknowledged. “I don’t feel I really played a good tournament for us. I missed a lot of shots. Even today, in the fourth quarter, it was a tight game and I had two or three looks that I have got to make.”

Held scoreless in the first quarter, Nowitzki urged his compatriots onward as they took their only lead with a 6-0 run in the third quarter. Ahead 41-39, that was as good as it got.

Clipper center Chris Kaman added 25 points for the Germans, but Lithuania, led by Raptors draftee Jonas Valanciunas, was too much. Gotta applaud Nowitzki for giving it his best shot, though—surely there were more relaxing options on the table for the reigning NBA Finals MVP, but he chose to represent his country. Respect.

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  • http://bilibid.com deezndhaus

    oh no..

  • LA Huey

    Lithuania guards were swarming on D. And the refs swallowed their whistles with Dirk. Also, the home crowd has given Lithuania a major boost in this tourney.

  • J Mac

    Raptors have a nice pick…

  • J Mac

    The crowd is crazy!

  • MUBWAR

    that number 5th pick wasn’t bad at all. I can’t believe ima say this, but he shut down Dirk. him playin D and Banana on the offense should make a pretty good front court for the raps

  • LA Huey

    ^Yeah, Jonas is looking like he’ll be worth the wait for Raps fans.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Nick the Quick

    I have watched quite a few FIBA games on ESPN3 and that Valanciunas dude # 5 pick is pretty good. Very athletic, very comfortable around the basket, great pump fakes in the paint and he just plays HARD. He would need to get stronger but so far I can see why teams were falling over themselves to draft him. The future of Lithuanian basketball. On a different note, Kayman sometimes plays like an All Star – other times he’s horrible. Travels on almost 75% of his isolation plays, gets stripped in the paint so easily, horrible passes out of double teams. But has a good touch around the basket esp with his left.

  • http://basquetcapital.org.ar argentino pro baller

    how come theres so little coverege on the FIBA AMERICAS tourney? Argentina, Brasil, Puerto Rico, Dominicana are all good teams whith NBA players on their roster. Theres a lot of basketball beeing played right now,why dont u guys cover dat insted of posting none news?

  • Heals

    Just goes to show the guy doesn’t have what it takes to carry a team to the promiseland…

  • http://slamonline.com AllBall

    Fiba Europe has been a lot better than the Fiba Americas, and I have been watching both. Only Argentina would be favored to get to the last four in eurobasket, out of the americas teams.

  • http://redoftoothandclaw.ca/ niQ

    Man, I honestly can’t wait to see Valanciunas play for the Raps. Hopefully by then he’ll have added on 20-25 pounds though.

  • http://www.slamonline.com UNFROZEN CAVEMAN LAWYER

    NIQ LOOKS SILLY. WE ALL KNOW WEIGHT IS ADDED IN 15 LB INCRIMENTS ONLY.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Nick the Quick

    @ AllBall I kinda agree that FIBA Europe is a lot better than the Americas but I have been pleasantly surprised by some of the Americas teams like Venezuela and Dominican Republic. That dude on the Dominican Republic that is a Ben Wallace clone seems was beasting. Honestly Argentina and Brazil, on their best day, are the only teams that can seriously compete in FIBA Europe. The backup center on Brazil, Hettsheimer (?) outplayed Splitter for most of the tournament. Splitter looks so stiff out there and cannot finish close to the basket. With Nene, Verajao and Barbosa on this team, they would have a chance against Argentina.
    Side note: Funny how FIBA refs hand out several warnings and threats of technicals and never really hand out techs unless something outrageous happens. Teodosic, Alex Garcia and Jasikevicius get away with way more than DWade and CP3 without getting hit with technicals.

  • rich

    @Caveman. Thats true but its more of a percentage thing actually a six foot guard and a seven foot center adding 15 pounds is very different. if you look at jonas he could add 20 pounds although i dont think he sshould gain any after that because he is more of a tyson chandler type of player on defense and putting on that much weight really fast can throw off the rest of your game if you dont have a good trainer

  • SchW

    respect!

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    I keep telling people, Dirk will be back to himself this year A CHOKE ARTIST, this is what I thought Dirk was. One great year does not make your career, ask Billups. BOOK IT!!!

  • http://slamonline.com Neitel

    YES!!!!! dirk lost…i am super happy he wont be playing any..ANY winter games…i dislike the mavericks since i was 8, and still do…i just hope he never and the mavericks, EVER, win another chip…umm, yes im hating on dallas and that dude dirk…by the way dirk, put your tongue back inside, you ain’t michael jordan dude

  • http://www.nba.com iceG

    he’s so tired….played in finals…4 fiendly games in bamberg..etc…, practice with national team, hey guys your NBA players playing in EURO didn’t even play in playoffs/finals…

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