On Wednesday, the Wizards defeated the Mavericks 132-123. The game was also an opportunity for Washington to give one last kudos to Dallas forward Dirk Nowitzki who is likely to retire after the season. Like many other teams, the Wizards pulled out some stops to commemorate Nowitzki, most notably by holding German Heritage Night.
The Wizards don’t have a German player on the roster and if you are cynical, you could even say this is a game geared toward opposing team fans. Nowitzki isn’t the only German playing on the Mavericks. So is forward Maxi Kleber.
But in this case, things are a little different. Nowitzki is no longer the All-NBA player he once was. But consider that 14.9 percent of Americans also have German ancestry. If you aren’t of German ancestry, you know someone who does.
Anyway Nowitzki met and spoke with Emily Haber, the German Ambassador to the United States before the game. Here’s a video from Wunderbar Together, a German-American friendship society with highlights from the night as a whole.
After the #WizMavs game last night, #basketball star Dirk Nowitzki (@swish41) spoke with the @GermanAmbUSA Emily Haber about his German-American connection and how he represents both countries on and off the court! #WunderbarTogether @GermanyinUSA @GoetheDC @RGIT_USA pic.twitter.com/h93zh5awt4— Wunderbar Together (@wunderbar2gethr) March 7, 2019
Here is when Nowitzki was recognized.
.@GermanAmbUSA Emily Haber attended the @dallasmavs v. @WashWizards game in #DC tonight at #CapitalOneArena. We’re excited to see living basketball legend Dirk Nowitzki (@swish41) for his possible last game in Washington! #WunderbarTogether @NBA #GermanHeritageNight pic.twitter.com/yLny7dtjZ8— Wunderbar Together (@wunderbar2gethr) March 7, 2019
And here are some more pictures of Nowitzki taking pictures with fans as well.
At the end of the day, the Wizards got the win and Nowitzki got his ovations. He only scored two points in limited minutes while Kleber did not play due to a knee injury. All in all, I think it was a good day for everyone except the Mavericks from a win-loss perspective.
There are always many Wizards heritage nights in Washington because it’s the capital of the United States. If there’s a heritage night we’re looking for the Wizards to host at this point, it’s Czech Heritage Night which they won’t have this season. After all, the Wizards will have French Heritage Night on Mar. 15!
Wizards Press Release:— Lukas Kuba (@Luke_Mellow) March 1, 2019
"The team will host numerous Heritage Nights, including German Heritage on March 6, French Heritage on March 15, Indian Heritage on March 16 and Filipino Heritage on March 23."
No Czech Heritage Night
Unless he specifically doesn’t want it, Tomas Satoransky has done very well this season and doesn’t seem to have a game not unlike the long streak Marcin Gortat had with Polish Heritage Night over the last several years.