Award Pains NBA's First European MVP

Trophy fills Dirk with existential angst after playoff debacle
By Jesse Andrews,  Newser User
Posted May 16, 2007 6:26 AM CDT
Dallas Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki, of Germany, looks at the Maurice Podolof Trophy during a new conference where Nowitzki was announced as NBA's Most Valuable Player for the 2006-07 season, Tuesday,...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Dirk Nowitzki was named the first European MVP of the NBA, but he was also the first since Moses Malone in 1982 to receive the award after losing in the first round of the playoffs.  Nowitzki put up career statistics, especially in shooting efficiency, while leading Dallas to the sixth-best record in basketball history.  Voting finished before the postseason.

Dirk was frank about his disappointment, saying, "At this stage right now, I feel it’s a little hard for me to be happy."  Mavericks owner Mark Cuban wiped away tears while lauding Nowitzki's work ethic. Former Maverick Steve Nash came in second; Nash's Suns are
currently battling the Spurs in the Western Conference semifinals.