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Contract Details: Dirk Nowitzki is on an expiring contract worth $22.7 million this season. He'll become an unrestricted free agent after this year.
What He Has to Prove: That staying in Dallas won't be a mistake.
Dirk Nowitzki has been loyal to the Dallas Mavericks, and the Dallas Mavericks have been loyal to Dirk Nowitzki. Although parting ways may have been in the best interest of both parties, Nowitzki, as far as we know, never made any requests to be dealt.
That's important because the Mavs couldn't deal Nowitzki without his permission due to a no-trade clause in his contract.
The Mavericks added Monta Ellis and Jose Calderon this offseason, but Nowitzki is still the biggest star in Big D. Although it's highly unlikely the Mavs contend for a title this season, there's more cap space on the horizon next season to surround Nowitzki with talent.
For this year, Nowitzki will have to prove that he's still good enough to carry a team and that he's not wasting the last few years of his career with a lottery team when perhaps he could have pushed to be dealt to a contender.