I think I just got a glimpse into Dirk Nowitzki's childhood, and boy - it was NOT pretty. No wonder he ended up becoming one of the best on the planet at an extremely non-German sport. He probably had all the practice time in the world available to him when he was repeatedly getting shunned from neighborhood futbol games. I can almost see the awkward moving, freakishly tall kid sulking away with his bowl cut in his hands after being the 17th man in an 8 v. 8 pickup game. Picking up some worn down basketball and heading to the rarely used courts to shoot one-footed fadeaway jumpers alone until the sun went down because he was ostracized by his peers because of his looks and inability to make fluid movements with his feet. It couldn't make more sense. How else goes a German born kid take to basketball other than using it as a coping mechanism for the shame he felt the few times he was allowed on the soccer field?
I bet that's the only reason he travels back to his homeland so often during the offseason. Just a little "look at me now" for all his old classmates. When's the next reunion? Remember 'Dirky the Jerky' that looked like a young Forrest Gump trying to get up and down the pitch when you were 12? Yeah, well he's got a 50 million dollar loyalty contract to shove in everyone's face. Still runs like a hobbled Clydesdale, but his back-to-the-basket footwork is so flawless that it would make Germany's soccer coach touch himself...as if he weren't doing that already anyway.
P.S. I have said it before and I will say it again, Dirk Nowitzki was supposed to be born an African American. If you ignore every single aspect of his appearance then it couldn't be more clear...