Southwest Notes: Parsons, Nowitzki, Marion

Other teams have outsized expectations of what the Rockets can achieve in the player acquisition department based on Houston’s recent success, Grantland’s Zach Lowe writes. The Rockets have been leaning all year toward declining their option on Chandler Parsons, so this week’s news isn’t necessarily an indication that they suddenly have confidence that they’ll land another marquee player this summer, Lowe says. There’s plenty more on the Rockets in Lowe’s piece, and we’ll hit the highlights here amid the latest from the Southwest Division:

  • The Rockets asked Charlotte for the equivalent of three first-round picks in return for Omer Asik this season, Lowe also writes in the same piece. It’s unclear exactly what would qualify as the equivalent of a first-rounder, but perhaps Lowe is referring to a rookie fresh off having been a first-round pick, like Cody Zeller.
  • Parsons has repeatedly asked for a raise the past two years, leading Lowe to wonder if he’s promised to re-sign in exchange for the Rockets declining his option.
  • A new contract for Parsons this summer would most likely count at 50% of its value for outgoing salary-matching purposes in a sign-and-trade, as Mark Deeks of ShamSports explains in a piece for Hoop365. It’d count at full value for incoming salary in that scenario, one of the reasons why it will be difficult for the Rockets to pull off such a maneuver, Deeks adds.
  • Mavs owner Mark Cuban isn’t worried about a report identifying Dirk Nowitzki as a free agent target of the Rockets, telling Eddie Sefko of the Dallas Morning News that, “I don’t pay attention to that.”
  • Reports that Shawn Marion wants to finish his career as a member of the Mavericks misconstrued his meaning, as Marion said Wednesday on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM that he merely meant to say that he wants to live in Dallas after he retires from playing. Still, he would prefer to re-sign with the Mavs this summer. Vince Marotta of rounds up his comments.
  • Jarnell Stokes, K.J. McDaniels and Russ Smith will audition for the Grizzlies next week, as Ronald Tillery of The Commercial Appeal reports in a subscription-only piece.
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