The most intriguing game on tonight's schedule happens out west, where the Lakers are in Denver as they try to get back to .500 for the first time since they were 15-15 at the end of December. While we wait to see if the Nuggets can keep the Lakers below .500, let's check out a few Western Conference links….
- If a big-name trade candidate becomes available this summer, the Warriors should be in the mix, says Matt Steinmetz of CSNBayArea.com, pointing out that Golden State will have young talent, draft picks, and big, expiring contracts to offer.
- As Derek Fisher prepares to join the Thunder for the rest of the season, Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News points out (via Sulia) that even when it became clear Oklahoma City wouldn't be re-signing Fisher last summer, the team had nothing but praise for him.
- When Thunder GM Sam Presti spoke on Friday about the trade that sent Eric Maynor to the Trail Blazers, he mentioned the trade exception acquired by Oklahoma City in the deal. But the Thunder also acquired the rights to Georgios Printezis, and Wendell Maxey of Ridiculous Upside thinks the club should strongly consider eventually bringing him stateside.
- By keeping Eric Bledsoe through the deadline, the Clippers are now expected to have a backup plan this summer if Chris Paul unexpectedly decides to sign elsewhere. But assuming Paul re-signs, the team will have to decide what Bledsoe's long-term future holds, writes Jovan Buha of ESPNLosAngeles.com.
- In a lengthy piece on players and teams who are "on notice" after the trade deadline, Grantland's Zach Lowe explores the Jazz's decision to keep both Paul Millsap and Al Jefferson last week.
- Following up on Dirk Nowitzki's comments about wanting to play beyond his current contract, Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com wonders how much of a bargain Nowitzki would give the Mavericks in his next deal.