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Western Links: Gay, Howard, Mavs, Hornacek

It's Memorial Day in America, but it's certainly no holiday for the Grizzlies and Spurs, who will meet in Memphis tonight, with the Spurs looking to complete a four-game sweep. As the Grizzlies look to begin climbing out of a 3-0 hole,'s Kevin Pelton (Insider-only link) re-examines a question that has come up several times in the last few months, exploring whether Memphis misses Rudy Gay. Here are a few more Memorial Day links from around the Western Conference:

  • Dwight Howard is "wide open" to the Mavericks, tweets Bill Ingram of HoopsWorld. That fits with what we've heard about Howard being willing to listen to pitches from any team when free agency opens. Ingram goes on to say that the Mavs, unlike the Rockets, actually project to have the space necessary to sign Howard without making a corresponding move. Without O.J. Mayo's option on the books, that may be true, though it will likely depend on how much the salary cap increases for 2013/14.
  • In exploring the Mavericks' chances of landing Howard, Tim MacMahon of wonders if the Rockets are a greater threat than the Lakers.
  • Sam Smith of touches on the upcoming Howard drama in his latest piece, in which he also explains why his idea of a LaMarcus Aldridge-for-Kevin Love trade could make some sense.
  • The Suns' hiring of Jeff Hornacek may give the team a boost in the community, given Hornacek's positive reputation in Phoenix, but it wasn't a factor in GM Ryan McDonough's decision, a source tells TNT's David Aldridge. Aldridge speculates that the community impact is something owner Robert Sarver may have considered. Aldridge's Morning Tip also includes a look at Larry Bird and details on Billy Hunter's lawsuit.
  • Adam Zagoria of lists all the players scheduled to participate in the Timberwolves' draft workouts this week.

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