Whatever that defining quality is, the one that enables great players to perform in the clutch—call it moxie, confidence, whatever you want—Dirk Nowitzki has it. He may not have had it in 2006, but he certainly has it now.
The Finals MVP, Nowitzki averaged 27.7 points and 8.1 rebounds on 48.5 percent shooting in the playoffs, including 26.0 points and 9.7 rebounds on 41.6 percent shooting from the floor and a remarkable 97.8 percent from the free-throw line in the Finals.
And despite struggling mightily for the first three quarters of Game 6, he came through in the clutch, scoring 10 points in the final period to finish off the Heat.
There's one statistic that stands out and illustrates just how impressive Nowitzki's performance was against Miami.
In the Finals, Nowitzki scored a combined 62 points in the fourth quarter; that's the same amount of points scored in the fourth quarter by both Dwyane Wade and LeBron James in the series' six games.