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Western Notes: Wolves, Nuggets, Thomas, Scola

The Kings haven’t yet made a trade offer to the Wolves for Kevin Love, reports Charley Walters of St. Paul Pioneer Press. Walters writes that Minnesota is still operating as if Love will be on the roster next season. Here’s a roundup for the Western Conference, including more notes from Walters’ piece:

  • Fred Hoiberg is not a candidate for the Wolves coaching job, but president of basketball operations Flip Saunders could still be in the running to become the next coach in Minnesota, according to Walters.
  • The Wolves are receiving calls on the availability of Ricky Rubio and Nikola Pekovic, in addition to Love, Walters reports.
  • Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities would be “mildly surprised” if Sam Mitchell won the Wolves head coaching job, and says that Minnesota remains focused on candidates with head coaching experience (Twitter links).
  • Nuggets GM Tim Connelly tells Nicki Jhabvala of The Denver Post that he has ownership’s blessing to make a major move to upgrade Denver’s roster. “We’ve got a lot of things at our disposal,” Connelly said. “We have the 11th pick, obviously, we have our picks going forward, we have a pretty big trade exception (worth $9.8MM), and I think we have a bunch of players who are well thought of outside our locker room, and they’re on contracts that — if we deem them movable guys — it’s not hard to move them.”
  • Connelly tells Jhabvala that he doesn’t expect to find a player who can immediately contribute with the team’s No. 11 draft pick, if the Nuggets keep it. “The 11th pick on a team that should be in the playoffs generally doesn’t have a huge impact from day one. Very few rookies had any impact this year on playoff teams,” Connelly said. “As our roster is presently constituted, who knows how we’re going to look after the draft. I think it’s unfair to put too much emphasis on the 11th pick.”
  • Rockets GM Daryl Morey tells Zach Lowe of Grantland that coach Kevin McHale is so high on Luis Scola that he still asks if Houston can reacquire the forward. Since the Rockets amnestied Scola, they cannot reacquire him until his contract, which is partially guaranteed through next year, is up.
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