Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki joined ESPN's NBA Lockdown podcast this week. Here are some highlights from the interview.

On Steve Nash retiring:

“I wasn’t really surprised. I kind of knew what was going on since October, that his body didn’t let him compete anymore at the highest level, so I was just surprised by the timing, that it came out now. I think it was a relief for him, that he’s happy it’s over with. I told him already in October that I was proud of him that he had an amazing career. He overcame a lot in his career with his health and being short and white and slow and unathletic and to be one of the greatest ever is an unbelievable achievement.”



On Nash not winning a championship:

“I think there is a lot of great great players in this league that unfortunately came up a little short. To win a championship is very, very hard in this league, you need a lot of things to come together. You need a little luck, your team has to be good, the chemistry has to be great, you have to stay injury free. There are a lot of components that play into winning a championship. He was competing at the highest level for so long, it’s a little unfortunate that they couldn’t get over the top.”



On their first year together in Dallas:

“The first year was hard for me. I didn’t know anyone in Dallas. My family was 11 flight hours away. Steve and really Mike Finley kind of took me under their wing and helped me out, got me out of the hotel, introduced me to new people in the world and helped me on the court. Both had been in the league for a few years, Steve had been in Phoenix for two years so he already kind of knew his way already in the league, how to play, how to prepare yourself and he just showed me how to be a professional on and off the floor just helped me out wherever he could. I’ll be forever thankful to Steve and Mike how they treated me in the first year. Then once I got better and better they kind of shared the spotlight with me and accepted me, so I’ll be forever grateful for those two guys and I’ll never forget it.”