The talking heads at ESPN get paid a lot of money to provide expert analysis that you just can’t get anywhere else. So, after it was revealed that Dallas Mavericks superstar Dirk Nowitzki tore tendons in his left middle finger, you sort of expected that the good folks at the World Wide Leader would break it down like only they can.
Tim Legler, appearing on ESPN’s Mike and Mike radio show, did not disappoint.
"They're going to downplay it, obviously. But there's no question, for a shooter, when your left hand has an injury like that - and I've played with dislocations on my left hand and various injuries throughout the years - it affects you when you catch the basketball," Legler said. "You don't quite catch it clean and that's a little bit of a problem getting into the shooting position, locked and loaded quickly…That's a big problem for Dirk Nowitzki because he actually prefers to go left, particularly when he starts from the middle of the floor at the top of the key.
"He loves to go left, swing through and go that way for either a step back jumper or to try to get to the rim to finish with that left hand. Both of those things are going to be affected by his inability to squeeze that basketball and get a firm grip on it."
Finally, Legler concluded with: "…will it affect him to the extinct that he's not an effective player? I don't think so but I don't think he's going to be the same Dirk Nowitzki that we've seen throughout the playoffs."
So, there you have it. Dirk’s injury will in fact impact him, apparently.