DALLAS - Dirk Nowitzki officially announced his retirement Tuesday night during his final home game with the Dallas Mavericks.
Dirk dominated his last home game with the only NBA franchise he's ever played for.
Number 41 started off the game against the Phoenix Suns very strong by scoring the first ten points and ended up with 30 on the night in a 120-109 win.
Dirk made his retirement official during his celebration after the game by saying: "As you know, this is my last home game."
When Dirk arrived at the AAC, he strolled past the crowd of cameras saying "it's like the NBA Finals" for what had all the appearances of his last arrival for a home game.
The 14-time All-Star was greeted by hundreds of team employees as he walked from his car to the arena. Dozens of cameras were waiting for the walk to the locker room.
Larger-than-life placards of Nowitzki's face were perched on most of the roughly 20,000 seats at American Airlines Center, and a huge mural hung over one of the entrances to the arena.
He’s spent his entire 21-year career with the Mavs. He’s been the NBA’s Most Valuable Player and an All-Star 14 times. Dirk also led the Mavs to a 2011 NBA Championship.
"It's hard to fathom how big it is if that is the case," coach Rick Carlisle said, referring to the lingering question of whether this is it for Nowitzki. "I have no idea how emotional it's going to be. But it will be emotional."
The team celebrated him with limited edition jerseys and food like the Dirk Burger. Fans walked the blue carpet on Victory Plaza and a ceremony was held after the game.
“It’s sad, you know. He’s been here a long time. He’s the billboard of the Mavericks, you know?” said Nathan Harrison, a Mavs fan. “It’s going to be some big shoes to fill.”
“Well, I think you could argue a lot of things are too much today. We hype a lot of things. I think someone like Dirk deserves all the hype. He deserves it,” added Tom Day, another fan.
In Downtown Dallas, a new Dirk mural on the back of the YMCA building at the intersection of Field Street and Ross Avenue comes to life with augmented reality.
The mural will be active through Saturday. Using a mobile phone, fans can go www.Mavs.com/AR to see 21 shots from Dirk’s 21 historic seasons.
The Associated Press contributed to the report.