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Friday August 22, 2008 6:24 pm

Dropping Dimes Mock Draft 2008: Round 1, Pick 7 - Dirk Nowitzki

Germany's Dirk Nowitzki
Well, the Chris Kaman German basketball experience has come and gone. Dirk has carried the torch for his country. Now the question is can he carry your fantasy team this coming season?

Here are Dirk’s highest and lowest averages in the major fantasy categories over the last three seasons:

Three year bests: 81 GP, 50.2 FG%, 90.4 FT%, 26.6 ppg, 9.0 rpg, 3.5 apg, 1.4 3pg, 0.7 spg, 1.0 bpg, 1.9 topg

Three year worsts: 77 GP, 48.0 FG%, 87.9 FT%, 23.6 ppg, 8.6 rpg, 2.8 apg, 0.9 3pg, 0.7 spg, 0.8 bpg, 2.1 topg

Dirk’s health over the last few years definitely stands out; calling his name on draft night smartly employs the strategy of trying to minimize risk as much as possible. Despite carrying the German national team, you can count on him logging minutes in almost every game. Even when he went down during the fantasy playoffs last season, he returned to action much sooner than expected.

The percentages are rock solid. He scores. Heck, one to two more rebounds a game, and another 40-50 steals and blocks over the course of a season and Dirk would be a threat to be the number one pick.

The shoot-out in the West also favors Dirk owners this year. The Mavs will once again find themselves in a dogfight within the Southwest Division. Dallas won 51 games in 2007-08 but it was only good enough for the seventh seed. The Jason Kidd era (Part II) in Dallas was underwhelming last season. Josh Howard has been making headlines off the court. The team needs Dirk to carry them and he will answer the bell. Dirk started shooting more treys after Kidd arrived. In his best years, he was good for 140-150 moneyballs. He just turned 30 in June, but he can certainly improve on last season’s numbers.

The middle of the first round means a choice between top flight names who perhaps have lost some fantasy luster recently (KG, Matrix), and a slew of high-risk-high-reward types (Flash, Agent Zero) coming off injuries.

Your competition will not see it as the flashiest pick, but drafting Dirk is always good work.

Peace.

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