Jermaine O’Neal has hinted that he’ll retire after the season, but the 35-year-old scored 20 points Tuesday in an overtime win, and he says the rumors surrounding coach Mark Jackson and the team have been a galvanizing force in the Warriors locker room. Jeff Caplan of NBA.com has more from the 18th-year veteran, and we have the latest from around the Pacific Division:
- Jordan Hill won’t rule out a return to the Lakers in free agency this summer, but not if it means playing the same limited role he’s seen this season, notes Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News. Hill would reportedly like the team to replace Mike D’Antoni, but Tuesday the power forward offered praise and respect for the Lakers coach. Still, if D’Antoni is back with the team next year, Hill certainly won’t be, Medina writes.
- P.J. Tucker, a restricted free agent this summer, calls the months ahead “the most important time in my career,” but he feels indebted to the Suns, and the Arete Sports Agency client fully intends on re-signing with them, observes Paul Coro of the Arizona Republic. “Of course, why would I not?” Tucker said. “They brought me here. I think I exceeded their expectations and mine with what has transpired. Of course, I want to retire a Sun.”
- The Lakers plan to keep Steve Nash and his full $9.701MM salary for next season, and his 10-assist effort Tuesday against the Blazers shows that he’s still capable of being more than just a sunk cost for the team, writes Dave McMenamin of ESPNLosAngeles.com.