Dirk Nowitzki’s spot in Sunday’s NBA All-Star Game might qualify as a shock to some.

After all, last season at this time, he was laid out on a beach in Mexico, soaking up the sun and probably a cerveza or two. He wasn’t even a consideration to be an All-Star.

So, 12 months later at age 35, he’s getting ready to unleash that one-legged fadeaway in the NBA’s highlight reel game.

As Nowitzki likes to say: “My game has never really been built for All-Star Games.”
He could not be more wrong.

If ever there was an NBA player who epitomized what being an All-Star is all about, it is Nowitzki in this season of revival. He went through a problematic 2011-12 season when the lockout and persistent knee trouble hurt his production. He was an All-Star that season but didn’t feel like one, and even said he didn’t deserve to be.

Then came 2012-13, when he had his right knee cleaned out in an arthroscopic surgical procedure and missed close to two months of the season, then needed another month to play his way into shape.
Charles Barkley was the first to stick a fork in Nowitzki and proclaim him done.