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Western Notes: Nowitzki, Mavs, Hayward, Jazz

The Lakers have gotten the majority of the headlines in the Western Conference this summer, but there's been plenty going on elsewhere, especially this weekend. Raja Bell and the Jazz remain in a staredown over his buyout, while former Clippers big man Kenyon Martin, one of the key remaining free agents, continues to hold out for more than the minimum. Here's more from the Western Conference:

  • Dirk Nowitzki says his knee feel fine, and despite the Mavs' failure to attract Deron Williams, he's upbeat about the team's roster this year, according to Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News. "I think we have a good team again," he said. "I like all the new additions. I think we got younger on the perimeter, more atheltic and that was always our goal."
  • Nowitzki singled out three of his new Mavs teammates for praise, saying, "[Chris] Kaman should be the best center offensively that I’ve ever played with in Dallas. [O.J.] Mayo is a big-time shot-maker that can also attack the basket and run some screen-and-rolls. [Darren] Collison is a fast guy who is going to push the pace. He’s great at penetrating and has a floater and creates shots."
  • Gordon Hayward says he was glad to see the Jazz bring back Jeremy Evans on a three-year, $5.25MM deal this summer, and embraces the challenge he faces for a starting spot at either wing position, as he tells Brian T. Smith of The Salt Lake Tribune. "You want to start for the team and you want to make sure you're the one out there on the court getting as many minutes as you can," Hayward said. "So, especially in training camp, there's going to be some competition going on. That'll just further benefit all of our games and make us better as a team."

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