Dirk Nowitzki Says He’d Accept A Bench Role, Which Could Be A Coded Call To LaMarcus Aldridge

After losing in the first round for the third time since their 2011 Championship, the Dallas Mavericks are looking to upgrade at every position this offseason. They’ve been rumored, among other teams, to be after Dallas-native LaMarcus Aldridge. If their pursuit happened to be successful, the Mavs would have a logjam at the power forward position with both Dirk Nowitzki and LaMarcus Aldridge — two players who thrive out on the wings taking jumpers over smaller opponents. In his exit interview after the 2014-15 concluded with a loss to Houston last night, Dirk Nowitzki revealed that he wouldn’t mind coming off the bench next season:

One potential scenario would be Nowitzki transitioning to a sixth man role if the Mavs are successful in what sources say is their planned pursuit of Portland Trail Blazers power forward LaMarcus Aldridge, a Dallas native and perennial All-Star who will be a free agent this summer.

“Yeah, I mean, whatever it takes,” Nowitzki said during the Mavs’ exit interviews Wednesday. “I’ve always said that. My last two years I want to enjoy. I want to be a good team. I want to be on a winning team. Playoffs. Hopefully deep runs. So, yeah, anything I’ve got to do to help is obviously no question.”

At the beginning of the season it was considered a long shot for Aldridge to leave the Blazers. But as the season progressed, the Blazers have grown more concerned with the idea of Aldridge leaving in free agency this summer. Aldridge’s two main suitors would be the Dallas Mavericks and San Antonio Spurs.

The Spurs are looking to reupholster their front court as Tim Duncan wades into retirement. Aldridge could play alongside Duncan or Tiago Splitter (if he’s still around) in the Spurs’ motion offense, and he wouldn’t be stepping on either’s toes in his sweet spots. LMA paired alongside budding superstar Kawhi Leonard for the next several years is a terrifying thought.

The Mavs are still long odds to land the Blazers power forward, but Nowitzki continues to show his full commitment to the Dallas Mavericks, and a willingness to take a backseat if it means improving the roster. Even at the tender age of 36, Nowitzki averaged 21 points and 10 rebounds in their series against the Rockets. He would be one hell of a bench option.

(ESPN Dallas)

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