Photo Credit: Vernon Bryant/Dallas News
The Frisco RoughRiders have been working on one of the most unique attractions in Minor League Baseball—and sports—since the beginning of March. Drawing national attention from almost every news outlet, the $1.5 million dollar project (read more about it here!) headlined by the team’s owner Chuck Greenberg is finally ready to sway fans up and down the right field porch.
The lazy river not only opened, it opened in style. Fitting too, because the first-of-its-kind pool was christened by none other than Dallas Mavericks player and global superstar Dirk Nowitzki.
Preparing for his Heroes celebrity charity baseball game on Friday night, Nowitzki and fellow athletes from the National Football League and Major League Baseball, as well as actors, television personalities and various others, conducted a practice session Thursday morning.
After speaking to media and taking a few cuts himself (watch here!), Nowitzki ventured out to right field to open the highly publicized pool on his own.
Using a blue pool float to match the Heroes game colors as well as his familiar Mavericks digs, the 7-footer took a few whirls around the pool. He may or may not have realized this, but his storied playing career—as well as his off the court philanthropic activities—just added another chapter.
He is the first person ever to float in a lazy river inside a baseball stadium. First one. So in 20 years when we look back at all the things the German native did, this will be one of the first things to come to mind.
Speaking of firsts, the first word said in the pool came from Dirk himself and it was “awesome.”
It was a big day for the 2011 NBA Champion, who also dropped a few great quotes on the 50-plus media members circled around him, most notably this gem on his approach to playing baseball.
“It’s a very humbling experience, this game. Before I first played it looked so easy on TV, I thought for sure I could hit one out. Then I came out for my first batting practice and I realized it’s gonna be hard to get it out of the infield.”
Pretty epic. He can do anything and everything on a basketball court, but finding the outfield grass seems to elude him. He has respect for the game and is as humble as any superstar across any sport has ever been.
Perhaps we shouldn’t count on him going oppo into the Lazy River.
The Choctaw Lazy River is opening Friday night, June 10th for Dirk Nowitzki’s Heroes game and will make its regular season debut on Saturday, June 11th when the Frisco RoughRiders host the Midland RockHounds.