The Mavericks are out of the playoffs, the Avery Johnson era is over and just a year removed from winning the MVP, Dirk Nowitzki’s world has been turned upside-down. I’m not a Mavs fan, but I do sort of feel bad for the guy. And last night I was thinking about what the future will hold for everyone’s favorite German jump-shooter while watching my favorite show, the Deadliest Catch. It immediately struck me that Nowitzki and the show’s most popular captain, Sig Hansen, bear an uncanny resemblance to one another.
Johnson is gone and the Mavs are headed downward, so there’s sure to be rumblings about Nowitzki being traded this summer. With that in mind, I started to think, who would I rather have as my Captain: the German sharpshooter (Dirk), or the legendary Norwegian crab catcher (Sig)? Time to stack these two up, Tale Of The Tape-style.
Dirk Nowitzki: 29-year-old, 7-foot, 245-pound forward from Wurzburg, Germany. He’s just finished his 10th NBA season, all with Dallas.
Sig Hansen: 42-year-old Seattle native whose boat, the Northwestern, is one of the top producing crab boats in the Alaskan fishery. He’s been the full-time captain of the ship for 18 years.
-This one was easy. Norway may be cold, but it’s supposed to be pretty nice. Oh and that whole thing about the Germans starting two World Wars is still a little touchy with some people.
Nowitzki: Shooting touch and range.
Hansen: Ability to work 40-plus hours straight without killing anyone.
Nowitzki: Josh Howard
Hansen: His brother and Deck Boss, Edgar Hansen
-Edgar is always reliable, likes to bite the heads off stuff and, as far as we know, he doesn’t love the pot in the offseason.
Nowitzki: The Flying Dutchman
Hansen: Psycho Sig
Nowitzki: His lack of any post game. The utterly awful Jason Kidd trade. Cuban’s overspending on marginal talent.
Hansen: His insane, completely irrational, hair-trigger temper.
Nowitzki: Mavs owner Mark Cuban
Hansen: Veteran Deckhand Matt Bradley
Nowitzki: 3,651 miles southeast of Dutch Harbor is where Nowitzki plays and lives during the season in Dallas, Texas.
Hansen: The Bearing Sea, with some of the worst weather on Earth. Violent storms, ice and waves pound the fishermen on their journey for the ultimate prize…Alaskan crab. The danger involved makes theirs the deadliest job on the planet.
Nowitzki: Not including endorsements, he made around $16.3 million this season. He’s in the middle of a three-year, $60 million extension that has him signed through 2011.
Hansen: As the Captain of multi-million dollar a year operation, Sig likely make something in the neighborhood of seven-figures.
Nowitzki: Career averages of 22.4 points and 8.6 rebounds per game. A career 37.9 percent 3-point, 87 percent free throw and 47.1 percent field goal shooter. Seven-time NBA All-Star, and a seven-time All-NBA player. Was the first European-born player to win an NBA MVP award in 2006-07. Won the All-Star weekend 3-point shootout in 2006. Like Mike.
Hansen: Captained the Northwestern to wins in the final “derby seasons” for King crab (2005) and Opilio crab (2006). Those years the Northwestern took home the titles for highest poundage caught and highest dollars earned. In his nearly 20 years at the helm, the Northwestern has not suffered a single death and its serious injury rate is significantly lower than the rest of the Bearing Sea fleet.
Nowitzki: Except for 2006, Tim Duncan has dominated Dirk’s Mavericks for the better part of a decade. Other candidates are Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash and Dwyane Wade after that whole phantom-foul thing during the 2006 NBA Finals.
Hansen: Captain Phil Harris of rival top-boat the Cornelia Marie. The two of them often prank each other by filling the other’s crab pots with trash, spare parts, etc. Other candidates: Capts. Johnathan and Andy Hilstrand of the Time Bandit, Capt. Keith Colburn of the Wizard, Mother Nature, Nicotine, Aegir Norse God of the Sea.
Elusive Thing They Chase
Nowitzki: An NBA title that will likely never come.
Hansen: King crab. Opilio crab.
Verdict: 5-4 Sig Hansen
Honestly, this shouldn’t have been a contest from the start. If we need to be led by anyone, it’s going to be Sig, the man is amazing. He’s funny, in a condescending, sarcastic kind of way, he’s been living on coffee and Nicotine for the past 20 years and he’s edgy and often angry for no reason. Now that’s my type of leader.