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Southwest Notes: Mavericks, Thibodeau, Ginobili

Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle plans to keep and use all four of his point guards, tweets Dwain Price of The Fort Worth Star-Telegram. New acquisition Deron Williams, who signed with Dallas after being waived by the Nets this summer, has joined J.J. Barea, Raymond Felton and Devin Harris in a crowded backcourt. “We’re going to keep all our point guards,” Carlisle said. “All those guys, Williams, Barea, Harris, Felton, those guys are going to be on the team.”

There’s more this morning from the Southwest Division:

  • Dallas has been one of the stops for former Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau as he makes the rounds of NBA training camps, according to Eddie Sefko of The Dallas Morning News. Thibodeau expects the Mavericks to contend for the playoffs even after losing key players such as Monta Ellis, Al-Farouq Aminu, Amar’e Stoudemire and Rajon Rondo“Rick’s been here a long time, and he’s had to adjust and adapt to injuries, guys leaving in free agency — you have a different team,” Thibodeau said. “But every year, he finds a way to win.”
  • The SpursManu Ginobili may have a more important role off the court than on it this season, writes Mike Monroe of The San Antonio Express-News. The 38-year-old averaged a career-low 22.7 minutes per game in 2014/15, and that number may drop this year. “He’s a leader, and he’s part of the fabric of the team, so none of that changes,” coach Gregg Popovich said of Ginobili. “I’ll probably be conservative with his number of games, and I imagine he will discuss that with me because he won’t fully agree probably and we’ll come to some sort of an arrangement. We always do.”
  • Jonathon Simmons is surprising the Spurs with his passing ability, according to Jabari Young of the San Antonio Express-News. The 26-year-old once averaged 36.5 points per game in the American Basketball League, so the Spurs knew he could score, but he’s getting noticed in camp as a distributor. “This is a team where passing is most important and finding the open guy,” Simmons said. “Just like I’ve done in the past, just thrive on finding gaps – sort of like what LeBron does. … I just know that’s a plus here with guys that can shoot the ball well, so I just try and find the open guy as much as I can.”

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