Dirk Nowitzki passes Dominique
LOS ANGELES -- Dirk Nowitzki has climbed higher than "The Human Highlight Film."
The Dallas Mavericks star passed Dominique Wilkins for 11th place on the all-time scoring list Friday night when Nowitzki hit a free throw with 8:47 remaining in the third quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers.
"Unbelievable," said Nowitzki , who finished with 27 points on 11-of-14 shooting in the Mavs' 107-95 win, giving him 26,678 points for his career. "It's been a crazy ride. I used to be a big fan of Dominique. I watched all his dunk contests and the many ways he could score, sometimes missing his own shot and he'd be the person to dunk over two people. He was just so much fun to watch.
"It's been surreal. It's been a crazy ride for 16 years, and I'm going to keep competing for a couple more years. Hopefully compete in the playoffs -- that's what we like, what we're all about with the Mavericks. That's really all I'm worried about now is making the playoffs. All the records are great once my career is over."
Nowitzki, the pride of Wurzburg, Germany, is now the highest-scoring European-born player in NBA history.
Wilkins, the aerial artist who spent most of his career with the Atlanta Hawks and finished with 26,668 points, was born in Paris, France but raised in the United States.
Nowitzki, who is averaging 21.7 points per game this season, could become a top-10 scorer by passing Oscar Robertson (26,710 points) during Dallas' road trip, which continues Sunday in Sacramento and Tuesday in Utah.