Garnett Vs Nowitzki

The big ticket vs the Germanator

Apparently there are many NBA  fans out there who believe Dirk should he ranked higher all time than Kevin Garnett  aka The Big Ticket as a power forward. After debating for a bit I decided to do my own unbiased research and learn  from both sides with undivided attention and come to a legit conclusion.

Note: Since comparing each of their seasons to one another would take awhile due to their really long careers, I decided to compare their 5 best individual yrs, top ones are for KG, bottom yrs are Dirk’s 5 best seasons, then in the end we’ll see their accomplishments.

Scoring

Season Kevin Garnett Dirk Nowitzki
1999-2000 (23) KG
2001-2002 (23) Dirk
  • 23.0ppg
  • 9.1/18.1 FGA = .502%
  • True shooting % = 54.5
  • 4.6/6.1 FTA = 75%
  • 105.9 ORTG
  • 69.8% of FGM assisted
  • 30.2% of FGM unassisted
  • 23.4ppg
  • 7.9/16.6 FGA = 48%
  • 1.8/4.6 on 3s= 40%
  • TS % = 60%
  • 5.8/6.8 FTA = 85%
  • 112 ORTG
  • 69.2 % of FGM assisted
  • 30.8% of FGM unassisted
2002-2003 (age 26) KG
2002-2003 Dirk
  • 23ppg
  • 9.1/18.1 FGA = 50%
  • True shooting = 55.3%
  • 4.6/6.1 FTA = 79%
  • 105.9 ORTG
  • 59.4% of FGM assisted
  • 40.6% FGM unassisted
  • 25.1ppg
  • 8.6/18.6 FGA = 46%
  • 1.9/4.9 on 3s = 39%
  • TS % = 58%
  • 6/6.9 FTA = 88%
  • 112 ORTG
  • 65.5% of FGM assisted
  • 35.5% of FGM unassisted
2003-2004 (MVP) KG
2004-2005 Dirk
  • 24.6ppg
  • 9.8/19.6 FGA = 50%
  • True shooting = 54.7%
  • 4.5/5.7 FTA = 79%
  • 105.9 ORTG
  • 66.5% of FGM assisted
  • 33.5 % of FGM unassisted
  • 26.1ppg
  • 8.6/18.6 FGA = 46%
  • 1.2/2.9 on 3s = 40%
  • TS % = 58%
  • 7.9/9.1 FTA = 87%
  • 110.2 ORTG
  • 53.4 % of FGM assisted
  • 46.6 % of FGM unassisted
2004-2005 KG
2005-2006  Dirk
  • 22.2ppg
  • 8.3/16.6 FGA = 50%
  • True shooting = 56.7%
  • 5.4/6.7 FTA= 81 %
  • 105.2 ORTG
  • 66.5% of FGM assisted
  • 33.5% of FGM unassisted
  • 26.6ppg
  • 9.3/19.3 FGA = 48%
  • TS % = 59%
  • 1.4/3.3 on 3s = 41%
  • 6.7/7.4 FTA = 90%
  • 111.3 ORTG
  • 50.7% of FGM assisted
  • 49.3 % of FGM unassisted
2005-2006 KG
2006-2007 (MVP) Dirk
  • 21.8ppg
  • 8.2/15.7 FGA = 53%
  • True shooting = 58.9%
  • 5.2 / 6.4 FTA = 81%
  • 102.2 ORTG
  • 60.5% of FGM assisted
  • 39.5% of FGM unassisted
  • 24.6ppg
  • 8.6/17.2 FGA = 50%
  • TS % = 60%
  • 0.9/2.2 on 3s = 42%
  • 6.4/7.1 FTA = 90%
  • 112.5 ORTG
  • 50.1 % of FGM assisted

Thoughts: Dirk being able to create space by being a stretch 4 most certainly gives his team a plus KG couldn’t provide, not to mention he beats KG in just about every category up there which gives the Germanator the edge.

Shooting Kevin Garnett Dirk Nowitzki
99-00 KG
2001-2002 Dirk
  • 232/337 (68%) in restricted area
  • 157/327 (48%) in paint. non R.A.
  • 504/1145 (44%) on jumpshots.
  • 340/781 (43%) on midrange Js
  • 189/311 (61%) in restricted area
  • 46/122 (38%) in paint non R.A.
  • 409/945 (43.3%) on jumpshots
  • 13/37 (35%) on corner 3s
  • 228/477 (48%) on midrange Js
2002-2003 KG
2002-2003 Dirk
  • 235/331 (71%) in restricted area
  • 142/348 (41%) in paint non R.A.
  • 503/1145 (44%) on jumpshots
  • 346/731 (47%) on midrange Js
  • 171/252 (68%) in restricted area
  • 74/159 (46.5%) in paint non R.A.
  • 518/1240 (42%) on jumpshots
  • 27/63 ( 43%) on corner 3s
  • 298 /689 (43%) on midrange Js
2003-2004 KG
2004-2005 Dirk
  • 256/383 (68%) in restricted area
  • 140/289 (48.4%) in paint non R.A.
  • 351/953 (37%) on jumpshots
  • 397/896 (44%) on midrange Js
  • 172/272 (63%) in restricted area
  • 59/130 (45%) in paint non R.A.
  • 486/1162 (42%) on jumpshots
  • 10/26 (38%) on corner 3z
  • 81/200 (40.5%) top of the key 3s
  • 341/815 (42%) on midrange Js
2004-2005 KG
2005-2006 Dirk
  • 253/391 (65%) in restricted area
  • 136/304 (45%) in paint non R.A.
  • 420/949 (44%) on jumpshots
  • 288/641 (45%) on midrange Js
  • 153/259 (59%) in restricted area
  • 121/272 (44.5%) in paint non R.A.
  • 590/1294 (46%) on jumpshots
  • 10/19 (53%) on corner 3s
  • 100/247 (40.5%) on top of the key 3s
  • 367/762 (48%) in midrange Js
2005-2006 KG
2006-2007 Dirk
  • 218/328 (66.5%) in restricted area
  • 97/204 (47.5%) in paint non R.A.
  • 395/847 (47%) on jumpshots
  • 303/629 (48%) on midrange Js
  • 148/251 (59%) in restricted area
  • 100/206 (48.5%)  in paint non R.A.
  • 521/1085 (48%)
  • 6/13 (46%) on corner 3s
  • 66/158 (42%) on top of the key 3s
  • 353/711 (50%) on midrange Js

Comments: Dirk who was part of the 40 50 90 club most certainly was the better 3pt shooter, has a slight edge on midrange Js, however KG was superior at attacking the rim or down low in the paint.  Tie

Defense Kevin Garnett Dirk Nowitzki
99-00 KG
01-02 Dirk
  • 99 DRTG
  • 5.6 defensive win shares
  • 32.1 opponent’s points in paint.
  • 120 steals
  • 126 blocks
  • 105.4 DRTG
  • 3.1 defensive win shares
  • 34.9 opponent’s paint points
  • 83 steals
  • 77 blocks
2002-2003 KG
2002-2003 Dirk
  • 99.1 DRTG
  • 5.8 defensive win shares
  • 31.4 opponent’s paint points
  • 113 steals
  • 129 blocks
  • 98 DRTG
  • 5.3 defensive win shares
  • 30.6 opponent’s paint points
  • 111 steals
  • 82 blocks
2003-2004 KG
2004-2005 Dirk
  • 95.5 DRTG
  • 8 defensive win shares
  • 28.4 opponent’s paint points
  • 120 steals
  • 178 blocks
  • 100.6 DRTG
  • 5.2 defensive win shares
  • 31.9 opponent’s paint points
  • 97 steals
  • 119 blocks
2004-2005 KG
2005-2006 Dirk
  • 104 DRTG
  • 6 defensive  win shares
  • 30.2 opponent’s paint points
  • 121 steals
  • 112 blocks
  • 102.7 DRTG
  • 4.3 defensive win shares
  • 28.4 opponent’s paint points
  • 58 steals
  • 83 blocks
2005-2006 KG
2006-2007 Dirk
  • 101.4 DRTG
  • 7 win shares
  • 31.7 opponent’s paint points
  • 104 steals
  • 107 blocks
  • 101.4 DRTG
  • 4.5 defensive win shares
  • 28.2 opponent’s paint points
  • 52 steals
  • 62 blocks

Thoughts: Two key points missing include that  KG made all defensive teams 12x, and won Defensive Player of the Year one time, Dirk has never made any all defensive teams or came close to winning DPOY. Garnett did guard the rim a lot more than Dirk did so  the odds of more points in the paint by the opponent is likely.

Playmaking Kevin Garnett Dirk Nowitzki
1999-2000 KG
2001-2002 Dirk
  • 5.0 apg, 401 total
  • 1.50 ast/tov ratio
  • 27.6% usage rate
  • 21.1 assist %
  • 2.4apg, 186 total
  • 1.28 ast/tov ratio
  • 25.4% usage rate
  • 10.5 assist %
2002-2003 KG
2002-2003 Dirk
  • 6.0 apg, 495 total
  • 2.6 ast/ tov ratio
  • 26.2% usage rate
  • 24.9 assist %
  • 3.0apg, 239 total
  • 1.57 ast/tov ratio
  • 27.3% usage rate
  • 12.9 assist %
2003-2004 KG
2004-2005 Dirk
  • 5.0 apg, 409 total
  • 1.93 ast/tov ratio
  • 29.4% usage rate
  • 23.3 assist %
  • 3.1apg, 240 total
  • 1.36 ast/tov ratio
  • 28.6% usage rate
  • 13.8 assist %
2004-2005 KG
2005-2006 Dirk
  • 5.7 apg, 466 total
  • 2.10 ast/tov ratio
  • 26.9% usage rate
  • 26.4 ast %
  • 2.8apg, 226 total
  • 1.45 ast/tov ratio
  • 30.1% usage rate
2005-2006 KG
2006-2007 Dirk
  • 4.1 apg, 308 total
  • 1.70 ast/tov ratio
  • 25.6% usage rate
  • 19 ast %
  • 3.4apg, 263 total
  • 1.57 ast/tov ratio
  • 28.9% usage rate
  • 16.9 assist %

Comments: Both big men played with  high basketball IQ-ed traditional points guards, Garnett had Rondo and Billups. Dirk had Nash and Kidd. However, KG clearly has the edge in this.

Rebounding Kevin Garnett Dirk Nowitzki
1999-2000 KG
2001-2002 Dirk
  • 11.8 rpg, 956 total
  • 2.8 offensive rebs, 223 total
  • 9.0 defensive, 733 total  rebounds
  • 17.3 reb %
  • 9.9rpg, 755 total
  • 1.5 off rebs, 120 total
  • 8.4 def rebs, 635 total
  • 14.6 reb %
2002-2003 KG
2002-2003 Dirk
  • 13.4 rpg, 1102 total
  • 3.0 offensive rebs, 244 total
  • 9.4 def rebs, 858 total
  • 18.7 reb %
  • 9.9rpg, 791 total
  • 1.0 off rebs, 81 total
  • 8.9 def rebs, 710 total
  • 14 reb %
2003-2004 KG
2004-2005 Dirk
  • 13.9 rpg, 1139 total
  • 3.0 offensive rebs. 245 total
  • 10.9 def rebs, 894 total
  • 20.1 reb %
  • 9.7rpg, 757 total
  • 1.2 off rebs, 96 total
  • 8.5 def rebs, 661 total
  • 14 reb %
2004-2005 KG
2005-2006 Dirk
  • 13.5 rpg, 1108 total
  • 3.0 offensive rebs, 247 total
  • 10.5 def, 861 total
  • 20.3 reb %
  • 9.0rpg, 728 total
  • 1.4 off rebs, 115 total
  • 7.6 def rebs, 613 total
  • 14.2 reb %
2005-2006 KG
2006-2007 Dirk
  • 12.7 rpg, 966 total
  • 2.8 offensive rebs, 214 total
  • 9.9 def rebs, 752 total
  • 19.9 reb %
  • 8.9rpg, 693 total
  • 1.6 off rebs, 122 total
  • 7.3 def rebs, 571 total
  • 14.9 reb %

Thoughts: No doubt Kevin who led the league in rebs 4x was the superior rebounder based off eye tests and stats.

PLAYOFFS Kevin Garnett Dirk Nowitzki
1999-2000 KG  (4 games)
2001-2002 Dirk (8 games)
  • 18.8ppg
  • 10.8rpg
  • 8.8apg
  • 7.5/19.5 FGA (38%)
  • 1.3 stls
  • .8 blks
  • 28.4ppg
  • 13.1rpg
  • 2.3apg
  • 9.1/20 FGA (.445%)
  • 16/28 on 3s (57%)
  • 2 stls
  • .8 blks
2002-2003 KG (6 games)
2002-2003 Dirk (17 games)
  • 27ppg
  • 15.7rpg
  • 5.2apg
  • 11.8/23 FGA (51%)
  • 1.7 stls
  • 1.7 blks
  • 25.3ppg
  • 11.5rpg
  • 2.2apg
  • 8.8/18.4 FGA (48%)
  • 27/61 on 3s (44%)
  • 1.2 stls
  • .9.blks
2003-2004 KG (18 games)
2004-2005 Dirk (13 games)
  • 24.3ppg
  • 14.6rpg
  • 5.1apg
  • 9.3/20.7 FGA (45%)
  • 1.3 stls
  • 2.3 blks
  • 23.7ppg
  • 10.1rpg
  • 3.3apg
  • 7.9/19.7 FGA (40%)
  • 10/33 on 3s (33%)
  • 1.4 stls
  • 1.6 blks
2004-2005 KG
2005-2006 Dirk (23 games)
MISSED THE PLAYOFFS
  • 27ppg
  • 11.7rpg
  • 2.9apg
  • 8.5/18.2 FGA (47%)
  • 23/67 on 3s (34%)
  • 1.1 stls
  • .6 blks
2005-2006 KG
2006-2007 Dirk ( 6 games)
MISSED THE PLAYOFFS
  • 19.7ppg
  • 11.3ppg
  • 2.3apg
  • 6.0/15.7 FGA (38%)
  • 4/19 on 3s (21%)
  • 1.8 stls
  • 1.3 blks

Thoughts: Dirk was the better shooter, scorer, better at stealing as well, but Garnett was the superior rebounder, rim protector, passer. Tie

CRUNCH TIME (last 5 mins game within 5) 4th Q Kevin Garnett Dirk Nowitzki
1999-2000 KG
2001-2002 Dirk
  • 167 mins
  • 146 pts
  • 50/91 (55%)
  • 55 rebs
  • 9 asts (18 tovs)
  • 44/58 FTAs
  • 4 stls, 5 blks
  • 110 mins
  • 75 points
  • 19/42 (45%)
  • 41 rebs
  • 11 asts (7 tovs)
  • 32/37 FT (86%)
  • 2 steals, 4 blks
  • 5/13 on 3s (38%)
2002-2003 KG
2002-2003 Dirk
  • 120 mins
  • 90 points
  • 35/64 (55%)
  • 45 rebs
  • 16 asts (9 tovs)
  • 20/29 FTA (69%)
  • 2 stls, 3 blks
  • 129 mins
  • 91 points
  • 26/51 (51%)
  • 46 rebs
  • 8 asts (4 tovs)
  • 33/38 FT (87%)
  • 4 steals, 5 blocks
  • 6/12 on 3s (50%)
2003-2004 KG
2004-2005 Dirk
  • 150 mins
  • 111 points
  • 40/83 (48%)
  • 44 rebs
  • 15 asts (3 tovs)
  • 29/35 FT (83%)
  • 2 steals, 7 blocks
  • 122 mins
  • 107 points
  • 22/64 (34%)
  • 46 rebs
  • 8 asts ( 5 tovs)
  • 62/70 FT (89%)
  • 2 steals, 7 blocks
  • 1/8 on 3s (12.5%)
2004-2005 KG
2005-2006 Dirk
  • 155 mins
  • 109 points
  • 38/77 (49%)
  • 47 rebs
  • 25 asts (12 tovs)
  • 33/39 FT (85%)
  • 4 steals, 4 blocks
  • 143 mins
  • 106 points
  • 27/81 (33%)
  • 51 rebs
  • 10 asts (7 tovs)
  • 49/54 FT (91%)
  • 0 steals, 5 blocks
  • 3/18 on 3s (17%)
2005-2006 KG
2006-2007 Dirk
  • 153 mins
  • 106 points
  • 33/73 (45%)
  • 47 rebs
  • 12 asts (3 tovs)
  • 3 steals, 8 blocks
  • 124 mins
  • 121 points
  • 37/77 (48%)
  • 37 rebs
  • 8 asts (4 tovs)
  • 3 steals, 2 blocks
  • 2/11 on 3s (18%)

Thoughts: In more mins Garnett scored 62 more points, grabbed 17 more rebs, dished out 32 more asts, stole the ball 4 more times, blocked 4 more shots, made more field goals on 9% higher field goal percentage. Dirk had more clutch 3s but shot a horrible 27% on that. Nowitzki also was much better at the FT line in crunch time. Overall KG has the edge….again.

Head to head (reg. season)

  • Dirk vs KG: 20-17, his career highs vs Kevin: 37pts (2x), 19 rebs, 6 asts, 2 stls, 5 blks, 67% FG (6 shots)
  • KG vs Dirk: 17-20, his career highs vs Dirk: 35pts, 22 rebs, 10 asts, 5 stls, 5 blks, 92 % FGA (12 shots)

   Career comparison

  • : Both have 1 NBA ring but Dirk won FMVP unlike KG.
  • Both  1x MVP winner
  • Dirk made a total of 12 ALL NBA teams to Kevin’s 9.
  • Both defeated LeBron James and Kobe Bryant in the playoffs/Finals.
  • 3x KG was top 3 in mvp voting, Dirk 3x as well.
  • Garnett led his team in all 5 major  categories 1x in 2003, Dirk never did such a thing.
  • Dirk did lead his team to the playoffs more times as the # 1 option.

Conclusion

After finishing the research I was surprised the debate was closer than I originally thought. In the end of the day both are NBA legends, can’t go wrong with either one as your franchise player but after all this research,  I’m still sticking with Garnett as the greater player, mainly because he was more versatile.

KGvsDN

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2 thoughts on “Garnett Vs Nowitzki”

  1. KG in game attitude and energy is incredible even during his Nets years… Dirk game is unbelievable, he can shoot from any where and is impossible to block… at the end of the I’ll take KG cause of his defensive aggressiveness… but both great players..

    Like

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