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Western Notes: Gentry, Speights, Bender

The Pelicans are off to a 7-16 start to the campaign, but coach Alvin Gentry isn’t concerned about his job status, Justin Verrier of ESPN.com relays. “I really don’t give a [expletive] about my job status,” Gentry said. “I’m gonna work hard, and I’m gonna coach until the day they tell me I’m not the coach here anymore. It doesn’t matter. I don’t ever worry about that. That isn’t anything that I spend five seconds worrying about. My worry is how do I get the guys in the locker room to play at the level that I want them to. That’s where all my effort goes. It doesn’t go anywhere else.”

When asked if he ever imagined things would get this rough in New Orleans, Gentry said, “No, I didn’t expect this, no. But we have who we have. And the bottom line is, I don’t care who we have in the locker room. All I expect is them to do is compete and play hard, which they’ve done most of the night, and then we’ve got to try to find a way to execute. And then we’ve got to make some shots. We’ve got to knock down some shots. That’s the bottom line.

Here’s the latest from out West:

  • Clippers forward Marreese Speights was down on the franchise’s perceived culture after the team’s recent drubbing by the Warriors, Dan Woike of The Orange County Register relays. “That’s the scouting report when you play against the Clippers,” Speights said. “It’s always been, especially with the Warriors, you play against the Clippers, you hit them a couple of times, and their spirit is going to be down. That’s what happened, so we’ve just got to find a way to get over that hump.
  • Suns big man Dragan Bender is learning on the job during his first season in the league, a process he discussed with Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic. “I’m just growing each and every day, trying to learn,” Bender said. “I know this is my first year and I’m 19 years old and I know it’s going to be tough for me. I’m just going to come each and every day and compete. I’ll try to go against anybody on the court. It doesn’t matter who it is in front of me. I just try to help win the games. My job is to play defense and hit the open shots and deliver the ball at the right time.

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