Nowitzki gives Mavs ‘hometown discount’

Apr. 23, 2010 - San Antonio, TEXAS, UNITED STATES - epa02129838 Dallas Mavericks player Dirk Nowitzki from Germany sits on the bench in the final seconds of the game against the San Antonio Spurs in the second half of their Western Conference first round playoff game at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, Texas USA, 23 April 2010. The San Antonio Spurs won 94-90 to take a 2-1 game lead in the series.

It looks like Dirk Nowitzki is staying in Dallas, and he agreed to a deal for less than the max.

With no guarantee the capped-out Mavericks can land the elite sidekick he seeks to keep Dallas relevant in the Western Conference, Nowitzki agreed Saturday night to give a hometown discount to the only team he’s ever known, reaching terms with owner Mark Cuban on what sources close to the talks say is a four-year deal worth $80 million.

That’s $16 million less than the $96 million maximum Nowitzki was eligible to receive and likely would have commanded had he been serious about shopping himself on the open market as an unrestricted free agent for the first time, given Nowitzki’s stature in the league as a former MVP and the fact that his game is aging well at 32.

Only in the NBA does a player sign a deal for $20 million per season and people say that he gave his team a ‘hometown discount.’ The extra $16 million would allow Mark Cuban to take on some additional contracts since the Mavs are perennially over the luxury tax.

From the start, it was clear that Nowitzki wasn’t going anywhere. Pundits talked about how he’d be a great fit here or there, or with this player or that player, but Nowitzki is a very loyal guy and Cuban has been good to him.

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