Sportress of Blogitude

Dirk Nowitzki referred to as ‘Big Mummy’ by Dallas Mavericks teammates


Dallas Mavericks jump-shooting big man Dirk Nowitzki is the “Big Mummy.” Interesting. Obviously, the “Big (insert whatever here)” is a commonly used template for bestowing a nickname upon a person. In NBA circles, Boston Celtics star Kevin Garnett is known as the “Big Ticket,” for instance, but there are numerous examples of such monikers throughout the world of sports as well as beyond it.

Nowitzki sat down with Grantland’s Zach Lowe for an extensive, wide-ranging interview recently and while the entire piece is a great read, the news that Dirk has been given such a unique nickname by his teammates is perhaps the most intriguing bit of information gleaned from it.

Dirk Nowitzki’s 2013-14 season couldn’t have gotten off to a worse start. The Mavericks forward was forced to undergo arthroscopic surgery on his right knee in October, missing the first 27 games of the season. He returned the Mavericks lineup in late December, with his first game back on Dec. 23 for a tilt against the San Antonio Spurs.

Since returning, Nowitzki has been something of a shell of his former self. He is averaging 15.1 points per game and shooting only 41% from the field, well below his career averages of 22.7 and 47%. But despite his mini-slump, Nowitzki’s sense of humor remains as good as ever, as illustrated by the sense of humor displayed during his Grantland interview and how he takes it in stride that he is now referred to as the “Big Mummy.”

Rumor has it the team calls you the Big Mummy now. Because you’re so stiff, I guess. Who came up with that, if it’s true?

[Laughs] … I don’t know, I think it was [Mavs assistant] Darrell Armstrong. He’s one of the craziest guys ever in this league. But, honestly, that’s not only this year. In the mornings, even the year we won it all, if you watch me in shootaround, I just look so stiff. First of all, I’m not a morning guy, so I run all stiff-legged in shootaround. But “Mummy” is a really good one.

While Big Mummy is solid, the way Nowitzki appears in several photos that have floated around the interwebs would lead me to refer to him as the “Big Zombie.” Like these two, for example:

dirk-nowitzki-drunk dirk-nowitzki-steve-nash-drunk

Okay, maybe “Big Drunkie” is more fitting.

Nowitzki also had some fun at his owner’s expense when the topic turned to Mark Cuban’s role in the reality show, Shark Tank. Making it even more interesting is how Shark Tank became a point of discussion:

Was that the same party where your old friend Steve Nash got a lap dance from Nicki Minaj?

[Laughs] Nah, that was at a different party. So I’ve had Deron’s number since then, and we were texting sometimes. And he knew I wanted him to come here. We talked when it was all in the process. I didn’t fly up on July 1. I wanted him to come. Cubes had to film freaking Shark Tank.

I just watched that for the first time the other night.

I still didn’t. I still refuse to watch it.

It was actually not bad.

I haven’t seen one episode and I probably won’t ever see one.

Man, Nowitzki sure is playing loosey goosey with the feelings of the guy who signs his paychecks. Not that anyone could blame him for skipping out of watching that train wreck of a television program. Yet, it’s probably just an indication of the friendship that exists between the two.  Nowitzki’s dominant performance as he led the Mavericks to an NBA title probably doesn’t hurt, either..

But how about Big Mummy as a moniker? Certainly not the most flattering of nicknames, especially given the meaning behind it. I wonder what Dirk Nowitzki Superfan Flula Borg thinks of it.