Western Notes: Grizzlies, Wolves, Jefferson, Brand

In his latest Insider piece for ESPN.com, John Hollinger explores the concept of the "second draft," an idea that involves acquiring players who had the talent to be high draft picks but who fell out of favor with their previous teams, for whatever reason. Hollinger points to the Grizzlies as one team taking full advantage of the "second draft" concept this season, with Jerryd Bayless, Quincy Pondexter, Wayne Ellington, and Marreese Speights making the club's bench one of the best in the NBA so far.

Here are a few more notes from around the Western Conference:

  • Before the Timberwolves signed Josh Howard, they "politely turned down" interest from Kenyon Martin's camp, and made the same minimum-salary offer to Mickael Pietrus, according to Darren Wolfson of 1500 ESPN Twin Cities. Howard accept the team's proposal first, as Pietrus' camp is still holding out for the mini mid-level.
  • Al Jefferson was upset after the Jazz' game against the Celtics that Boston media had interpreted his comments about his C's history to mean he wanted to return to Boston, according to James Patrick of the Deseret News.
  • While Mike D'Antoni won over the media when he was introduced in Los Angeles yesterday, it will be more important long-term for the Lakers' new coach to win over Dwight Howard, says Ken Berger of CBS Sports.
  • After he didn't land the Lakers' coaching job, Phil Jackson is unlikely to be considered a serious candidate for the next Team USA coach, according to Ric Bucher of 95.7 The Game, who says (via Sulia) that newly re-elected chairman Jerry Colangelo and Jackson aren't exactly close.
  • Elton Brand appeared on ESPN Radio Dallas to discuss the eventual return of Dirk Nowitzki and the adjustments that fellow offseason acquisition O.J. Mayo has had to make with the Mavericks (link via Sports Radio Interviews).

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