“Behind every successful man, there is a woman.” For Dirk Nowitzki, that woman is Jessica Olsson, who he married in 2012. The two have three children - Morris, Max, and Malaika. However, things would have been different for Dirk had he married his ex-girlfriend with a troublesome past.
Cristal Taylor and her financial crimes
Cristal Taylor was apprehended by the authorities in Nowitzki’s home on May 6, 2009. She was served two warrants: violation of probation and theft of service charge. German coach Holger Geschwindner, credited for mentoring young Nowitzki and training him to become a superstar, ordered a background check for Taylor and a prenuptial agreement. The investigations opened a can of worms.
Dirk and Taylor were reportedly engaged and set to marry in July 2009, and the Mavs star splurged on a $250,000 engagement ring. Unfortunately, the investigations on her background revealed financial crimes she committed in the past. Taylor failed to pay a dentist in 2004 for work that amounted to as much as $20,000.
It was also reported that Taylor accumulated $330,000 in debt while she was married to her ex-husband. Meanwhile, she was put on probation in 1999 after multi-year prison sentences were suspended based on forgery and two counts of felony.
Taylor claimed she was pregnant when she was arrested, but prison records denied her claims. Dirk was devasted by the news and admitted he almost lost the desire to find love again.
"I still want to have a family, but first the wounds must heal. However, I still want to have a few little Dirks running around later. But it won't be easy to win my heart."
Dirk Nowitzki, ESPN
Dirk’s life with Jessica Olsson
Fortunately for Dirk, he found love once again with Jessica Olsson. They married in 2012 after the Mavs won the championship a year earlier. Without her, it’s safe to say Nowitzki’s career would not have been as successful.
Number 41 is now immortalized in American Airlines Center after the Dallas Mavericks retired Dirk’s jersey. Considered the greatest Maverick of all time, the sweet-shooting forward is also credited for paving the way for Joel Embiid and Nikola Jokić to dominate in the NBA.
Dirk Nowitzki’s life is all about overcoming struggles and trusting the process. In the end, his perseverance to stay loyal to the Mavs organization resulted in a championship. Moreover, his pursuit of a second chance at love resulted in a lifetime of happiness outside the basketball court.