Dirk Nowitzki 'has carried this franchise'

Updated: May 10, 2011, 8:58 AM ET

DALLAS -- There's something different about Dirk Nowitzki, and it seems as if the rest of the country is taking notice of the Dallas Mavericks' superstar.

And opinion isn't being confined only to this year's playoffs: Nowitzki's legacy as an all-time great is also gaining momentum.

"In my opinion, he's a top 10 player in NBA history because of the uniqueness of his game and how he's carried this franchise on his back for over a decade," Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle ...

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