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Western Notes: Harden, Warriors, Kings, Mavs

After looking at the NBA's most cap-friendly deals a week ago, Grantland's Bill Simmons returns today with his picks for the league's top 30 worst contracts. Within the piece, Simmons passes along an interesting nugget regarding the Thunder's James Harden trade talks.

Multiple sources tell Simmons that the Warriors were the first team Sam Presti called when he explored a Harden deal, as Oklahoma City hoped to land Klay Thompson. However, Golden State, wary of future tax bills, wanted the Thunder to take back Richard Jefferson or Andris Biedrins, rather than cheaper or shorter-term contracts, which resulted in Presti exploring other options and eventually reaching an agreement with the Rockets.

While the Warriors would have been in line for a huge tax bill for 2013/14 if they'd extended Harden to go along with all the other big-money contracts on their books, it's hard not to be intrigued imagining what a Harden/Stephen Curry backcourt would have looked like.

Here are a few more Friday notes from around the Western Conference:

  • Sports marketing expert David Carter spoke to Sam Amick of USA Today about the Kings sale, exploring whether Sacramento is a better basketball market than Seattle, why a public subsidy in Sacramento's arena proposal could appeal to the NBA, and a handful of other topics.
  •'s Chris Broussard explains why he believes it's in Dwight Howard's best interests to re-sign with the Lakers this summer.
  • Another busy summer is in store for the Mavericks, as the team continues to seek a talent that would make Dirk Nowitzki the second-best player on the roster, writes Dwain Price of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
  • Despite the team's projected cap space, the future isn't looking particularly bright for the Mavericks, according to Gil Lebreton of the Star-Telegram.

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