Odds & Ends: Mavs, Kings, Draft, Cavs

Mavericks president of basketball operations Donnie Nelson says he’s confident his team is attractive to marquee free agents, the sort he confirms the club will again be chasing this summer, observes Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News.

“The hope is … we’ll be able to [make a marquee hire] sooner than later,” Nelson said. “I think we’ve made an attempt to do that the last two summers. So much for second place. But, yes, that would be the plan and the hope at some level to be able to do that.”

Nelson also suggests the team won’t be aggressive before the trade deadline, and Sefko outlines the reasons why in a separate piece. As we wait to figure out what the Mavs do with the chance to open up roughly $30MM worth of cap space, here’s more on their rivals from around the league:

  • A group opposed to a $258MM civic expenditure for a new Kings arena has sued the city of Sacramento, report Ryan Lillis and Dale Kasler of The Sacramento Bee. The legal action has been anticipated since last week, when the city rejected a petition to put the funding up for a public vote.
  • The NCAA has cleared draft prospect Chris Walker to play for the University of Florida, according to Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com, who adds via Twitter that the decision makes it a near-certainty that the small forward will return to school for next season. Walker, ranked as the 25th-best prospect for 2014 on the ESPN.com Insider list and No. 27 at DraftExpress, could become a lottery pick in 2015, Goodman says.
  • Cavaliers GM Chris Grant expressed confidence today in coach Mike Brown and said he’s unsure if the team will make any changes to the roster in advance of the trade deadline. Mary Schmitt Boyer of The Plain Dealer has more from Grant’s rare chat with reporters today.
  • The Cavs have assigned Sergey Karasev to the D-League, the team announced. Carrick Felix, Karasev’s usual traveling partner on trips to the Canton Charge, is out for the next six to eight weeks with a stress fracture in his left knee.
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