Western Notes: Brewer, Jackson, Gay

Tonight’s matchup between Memphis and Houston is a good one, but it’d be hard to fault fans looking forward to Wednesday night’s clash between the defending champion Spurs and the LeBron James-led Cavaliers. Sam Amick of USA Today writes that the Cleveland faithful should thank the Spurs for their part in sending James back to his hometown club, as few dispute that a Miami victory last June would have prevented the offseason’s biggest shakeup.

We’ll have to wait until Wednesday to see if the Spurs get their due from the Quicken Loans Arena crowd. Until then, let’s see what else is going on out West:

  • While Wolves coach/executive Flip Saunders tried to downplay the Corey Brewer rumors earlier today, it sure appears that interest in the veteran swingman is legitimate. However, Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities isn’t getting the sense that a trade is imminent (via Twitter). Meanwhile, Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle questions whether the Rockets would use their traded player exception this early in the season (via Twitter). As our Outstanding Trade Exceptions guide shows, Houston obtained a trade exception of nearly $8.4MM when they sent Jeremy Lin to the Lakers.
  • With superstars Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook on the shelf, Thunder guard Reggie Jackson has had the spotlight to himself in Oklahoma City recently, averaging 21.5 points in the team’s first 11 games. Jackson and the Thunder broke off extension talks in October and the fourth-year guard is set for restricted free agency this summer. One guy who knows what it’s like to be the third fiddle in OKC is James Harden, who told Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman that Jackson should take advantage of this opportunity. “I fell into the same situation, and that could have been my only contract. And I’m sure Reggie feels the same way. He has to get the money that he’s earned and that he’s worked his whole life for. It’s the nature of the business. It’s going to happen every single year and it’s going to continue to happen.”
  • Rudy Gay and the Kings are perfect for each other, writes Tom Ziller of SB Nation. Ziller considers the extension agreed upon yesterday to be mutually beneficial, with Sacramento keeping a good player at a reasonable price while Gay pockets a nice chunk of change in the short term without totally sacrificing his ability to take advantage of the league’s new TV money. Assuming his success continues in Sacramento, Gay can decline his player option for 2017/18 and cash in one year after the cap explodes skyward in 2016.

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