Western Notes: Jordan, Lakers, Nuggets

Now that the Clippers have been eliminated from the playoffs, the team needs to look toward the offseason and find a way to improve despite the franchise’s challenging salary cap situation, Fran Blinebury of NBA.com writes. According to coach/executive Doc Rivers, Los Angeles’ first order of business this summer will be re-signing center DeAndre Jordan, Blinebury notes. “Our first priority is D.J.,” Rivers said. “That’s obvious. I don’t know how much I can say there. Can you tamper with your own guy? If that’s true I’m going to go tamper right now.” The Clippers will have competition for the unrestricted free agent’s services, and Jordan has already expressed through back channels that he’ll be “extremely interested” in signing with the Mavs this summer.

Here’s more from the Western Conference:

  • The Nuggets are taking their time looking for a new head coach, and a decision isn’t expected for another couple weeks, Christopher Dempsey of The Denver Post writes. “It’s exactly how we thought it would go,” team president Josh Kroenke said. “We’ve had several conversations with a lot of people. I think that it benefits us to talk to as many people as we can. We have some people in the back of our mind that we think would be great fits. I’ve talked to enough people, and going through the process before, your coaching hire is probably going to be your hardest hire because there’s so much that goes into that role in today’s sporting industry.”
  • Kroenke also relayed that the Nuggets aren’t concerned about the length of time the coaching search has taken thus far, Dempsey adds. It’s beneficial for us on some level to be patient,” Kroenke said. “I think more candidates have opened up since the end of the season. Based on different organizations wanting to go different directions with different guys, I think there was never a time when we wanted to rush into anything. Until you have that guy that you know is the one that you want, I think it really benefits you to talk to as many people as you can. Because also during the course of these interviews you’re getting to pick some of the best basketball minds that are out there. That’s an incredible benefit to the process.
  • The Lakers aren’t 100% set on drafting either Karl-Anthony Towns or Jahlil Okafor, and the team is intrigued by D’Angelo Russell and Emmanuel Mudiay, Dave McMenamin of ESPN.com tweets.
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