Nowitzki named as newest FIBA World Cup China Ambassador
by Jaelle Nevin Reyes, May 17, 2019 9:52am
Photo from FIBA
Former Dallas Maverick star forward Dirk Nowitzki was revealed as the third global basketball icon to represent the 2019 FIBA World Cup China as its ambassador, the world basketball governing body announced in a release.
The retired German national team stalwart joins ex-Los Angeles Laker and American superstar Kobe Bryant and Chinese basketball giant Yao Ming as the faces of the first-ever 32-team World Championship.
"I'm very excited to become an ambassador for the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019. It's an honor to join Yao Ming and Kobe Bryant, some of my contemporaries and biggest rivals, in taking up this prestigious role," Nowitzki said in a statement.
The ninth overall pick of the 1998 NBA Draft had an illustious career with the Mavericks as well as with Germany in the international stage. He helped the Dallas Mavericks clinch their first NBA Championship while clinching the finals Most Valuable Player (MVP) plum in the same year.
Nowitzki also was a mainstay for the German national team from 1999 to 2015, including the countrty's best finish in the World Cup in 2002 where he helped the squad seal a bronze medal finish while also seizing the World Championship MVP and top scorer awards.
"I have so many great memories of playing in basketball's top competitions. Wearing the national team jersey and representing my country in FIBA competitions has always been a source of immense pride for me," he stated.
He added: "I have been fortunate to perform on the world's biggest stages - at World Cups, Olympic Games and EuroBaskets. Helping Germany finish third at the World Cup in Indianapolis in 2002 ranks among the best moments in my career."
The 2019 FIBA World Cup tips off on August with 32 teams vying for the coveted crown across eight venues in different host cities in China.
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