Dirk Nowitzki crutching his way into a press conference is not what Mavs fans want to see.

But this is what Mavs fans want to hear.

"Planning on coming back," he told a packed press conference Tuesday afternoon.

The Mavs forward returning for a record-setting 21st season with the same franchise. Music to the ears of... well, apparently only most Mavs fans.

"After every game I go on twitter, and one guy just says 'oh my god, please retire!' So there's a little of both, some love and hate," he said with a laugh.

Mostly love, no doubt. And at this point, Dirk can do whatever he pleases -- including coming back for what he hopes will be a more competitive Mavericks campaign in 2018-'19.

"We'll see what's gonna happen this summer," Nowitzki said. "I know [owner] Mark [Cuban] and [general manager] Donnie [Nelson] are gonna work their butt off with the draft first and them some free agency things, and see what the team looks like next year."

But what Dirk has always been -- be it in a championship season, a tanking season, or anywhere in between -- is an ambassador for this franchise, and a friend. Which was on full display when a former teammate crashed the party.

Former Mavs center Tyson Chandler snapped some pics, snagged a hug, and seized some laughs with his former teammate.

It was a moment that would make any Mavs fan pine just a little harder for 2011. But also makes their heart a little fuller, too.