Dirk Nowitzki had two reasons to celebrate Sunday night. The first was reaching 25,000 career points in the first half. The second was shaving.

Within moments after Dallas’ 107-89 victory over New Orleans on Sunday night, Nowitzki made a beeline to the locker room to shave that awful mess that has been growing on his face since late January, when six Mavericks made a pact not to shave until the team reached .500.

Sunday, it finally happened. The Mavericks are 40-40, the first time they’ve been .500 since they were 11-11 on Dec. 12. Literally within five minutes after the game, a beaming, almost clean-shaven Nowitzki emerged from the locker room for Channel 21 in Dallas, joking that the beard had “some food caught in there from a few weeks ago.”

Nowitzki said he brought an electric razor to New Orleans, just in case. Unfortunately, the one he brought was a bit small for the job, but someone else brought a larger electric razor, so Nowitzki grabbed it. It’s doubtful that person wanted it back once he was done.

“I had a little (razor), so that was a struggle a little bit the first couple of times, but it was able to get most of it so I was happy,” he said. “I did the coaches’ meeting and I ran back in right before the interviews and cleaned up the rest on the neck and behind the ears and the nose hair a little bit, and then I did the (TV) interview.”

That was probably more information than we needed, Dirk, but it was entertaining.

“I think my wife stopped kissing me somewhere in February,” he said.

Typical Nowitzki. He had more fun talking about getting to shave than discussing his milestone. Needing 10 points Sunday to reach 25,000 points, Nowitzki scored points No. 25,000 and 25,001 on a post-up 18-foot jumper over Robin Lopez with 6:44 remaining in the second quarter, giving Dallas a 43-27 lead.

“Yeah, I knew I had to get 10,” he said. “I would have loved to do it at home, for our fans that supported me over the last 15 years and came out every year, came out every game, and even this year when we were struggling, the gym’s always full. The fans of Dallas have obviously meant a lot to my career and I would have loved to have done it at home, but it just didn’t happen that way.