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Southwest Notes: Rondo, Pelicans, Howard

Rajon Rondo is still open to re-signing with the Mavs, writes Marc J, Spears of Yahoo! Sports“It’s a player’s organization. Players first, from our plane, the way we travel. I don’t take that for granted. We eat good. We stay at the best hotels. Of course, it’s the NBA. But this organization has the best. They have PlayStation in the lockers. I don’t play games, but it’s nice to know I got a PlayStation. TVs in your own locker. I heard about it – [Brandon Bass] and J-Terry [Jason Terry] told me – but seeing it and experiencing it,” Rondo said. “I love it here. I don’t dislike anything. I’m not uncomfortable. Of course, the system is different, but I’ve been here for two months. It’s going to take time. Hopefully, sooner rather than later.”

Here’s more from the Southwest Division:

  • The Grizzlies are leading the division with a record of 44-18 and Broderick Turner of the Los Angeles Times believes that Memphis’ style of play is key to the team’s success. Playing defense has been the Grizzlies’ calling card for the past few seasons. This year, Memphis has the best defense in the league, allowing only 95.6 points per game.
  • The Pelicans are a half game behind the Thunder for the eighth seed in the Western Conference and Jimmy Smith of the Times-Picayune wonders whether the team has the right mentality to make the playoffs. Coach Monty Williams is a proponent of a relaxed, one game at a time approach, but Smith believes the team needs to look at the big picture and take every game with a little more urgency.
  • Dwight Howard has begun his on-court rehabilitation, which is the next step in coming back from his knee injury, writes Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle.  “He’s starting to do a combination of treadmill/floor stuff, which is a good sign, but they’re going slow. They want to make sure they have a handle on it. It’s bothered him really all year,” coach Kevin McHale said. The Rockets are 43-20, which currently puts the team in third place in the conference. The Rockets have a nine game lead over the Pelicans, the conference’s ninth place team, so rushing Howard back for the sake of winning regular season games shouldn’t be a priority.

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