What’s in a name? 50,000 minutes, for Dirk

On the night Dirk Nowitzki joined the 50,000-minutes played club, the Mavericks spelled his name incorrectly on his game jersey.

Another game, another milestone for Dirk Nowitzki… even though whomever is responsible for the Dallas Mavericks’ game jerseys, apparently can’t spell his last name.

Nowitzki, a 20-year veteran who has played his entire career with the Mavericks, became the sixth player in NBA history to play 50,000 or more minutes during a 104-101 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers.

The impressive milestone caught the attention of LeBron James of the Cavaliers.

As for his jersey, Nowitzki’s last name on the back of his jersey read, “Nowitkzi.”

Still, the big German took it in stride.

“I usually look at my jersey, so I never even saw it myself,” Nowitzki told reporters. “It happens. I guess it kind of sums up our season.”

Nowitzki joins Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Karl Malone, Kevin Garnett, Jason Kidd and Elvin Hayes as members of the 50,000-minute club. He now ranks fifth all time in minutes, having passed Hayes.

“I just really believe Dirk’s record of high level of excellence, of longevity, durability, is one of the most remarkable I’ve ever seen in sport,” Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle told reporters after the game.

“That’s crazy,” Clippers coach Doc Rivers said. “It really is amazing. I mean, I don’t know how he gets up in the morning. And he had hard minutes because he was the guy other teams were trying to attack every night.”

The 39-year-old Nowitzki is averaging 12.1 points and 5.6 rebounds in 24.9 minutes per game this season for the Mavericks (17-37), possessors of the worst record in the Western Conference.