The Southwest Division could be the NBA’s toughest this year, with five teams that have legitimate playoff hopes. The two Southwest clubs that played for the conference title last year, the Spurs and Grizzlies, meet for a rematch on Wednesday in the first of a season of key clashes. Here’s more from the Southwest:
- B.J. Young drew interest from the Sixers and Lakers before deciding to join the Rockets for camp, according to Shams Charania of RealGM.com. He was the first player the Rockets cut from their training camp roster, hitting waivers nearly a month ago, but he’ll sign a deal with Houston’s D-League affiliate, the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, Charania adds. Since he’s apparently signing directly with the Vipers instead of entering the D-League draft, that means the Rockets made him one of the three camp cuts whose D-League rights they can protect.
- Tyreke Evans and Jrue Holiday are the major new arrivals for the Pelicans this year, and both shared insight on how the team’s new-look backcourt is coming together. Evans also spoke to HoopsWorld’s Alex Kennedy about his experience as a free agent, comparing it to college recruiting, while Jimmy Smith of The Times-Picayune points out that Holiday is the fourth starting point guard for the team in as many years.
- Ken Rodriguez of Spurs.com examines the connection between a pair of San Antonio’s offseason signees. Marco Belinelli refers to Manu Ginobili as his “idol,” and it’s worth noting that Belinelli agreed to join the Spurs this summer shortly after the team reached a new deal with Ginobili.