Dirk Nowitzki: Dallas Mavericks legend passes Hakeem Olajuwon as the highest non-American points scorer in NBA history

German moved up to ninth on all-time list on 26,953 points

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The Independent Online

Dirk Nowitzki became the top-scoring non-American player in the history of the NBA on Tuesday night as the Dallas Mavericks beat the Sacramento Kings.

The German, 36, scored 23 points against the Kings to take his overall tally to 26,953 points in his 17 th season in the league, above Nigerian Hall of Fame centre Hakeem ‘The Dream’ Olajuwon on the international list and ninth overall on the all-time list.

"It's an honour," said Nowitzki.

The 12-time All-Star and 12-time All-NBA selection scored a midrange shot with 8:56 remaining in the game to pass the former Houston Rocket.

 "To do it at home, it was even more special. Getting a standing ovation, it was great."

"Hakeem, to me, was one of the greatest. I grew up watching him in the 90s. His footwork, his touch, was next to no other. I'm really humbled to keep climbing the ladder, blessed to stay healthy, and play at a semi-high level, I guess."

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Nowitzki's record-breaking shot in the fourth quarter

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is the all-time leading points scorer, with 38,387. Kobe Bryant, fourth on the list, is the only other active player in the top 10.

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