Western Notes: Wade, Lakers, Nuggets

Dwyane Wade sees the Lakers as an possible destination if he declines his player option, Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated tweets. There is a mutual interest, league sources told Mannix, despite the Lakers being in rebuild mode. Wade reportedly would welcome $20MM salaries if he turns down his $16.125MM player option. The lure of playing in Los Angeles and the team’s ample salary cap room could be the attractions for Wade, Mannix adds in a separate tweet. The Lakers have also been linked to free agent Goran Dragic, Wade’s backcourt partner in Miami.

In other news around the Western Conference:

  • The Lakers are well aware of the failures of previous No. 2 overall picks, Bill Oram of the Orange County Register reports. Since 2000, only three players drafted at that spot – Tyson Chandler, LaMarcus Aldridge and Kevin Durant – became All-Stars while several have been complete busts, including Darko Milicic, Hasheem Thabeet and Stromile Swift, Oram continues. That does not mean the Lakers are inclined to trade the pick, Oram adds. “I don’t think we’re going to end up saying, ‘15 of the last 18 No. 2 picks have not been great selections, therefore we must trade the pick,’” Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak told Oram.
  • Tyus Jones is expected to work out for the Nuggets on Monday, according to Chris Dempsey of the Denver Post (Twitter link). That’s an interesting development, considering Denver has the No. 7 overall pick and the Duke point guard is currently rated No. 23 on ESPN Insider Chad Ford’s Top 100 Prospects list and No. 14 by DraftExpress’ Jonathan Givony. That may be a signal the Nuggets are looking to trade down or acquire another pick.
  • Kings coach George Karl doubts that the player they draft with the No. 6 overall pick could play 30 minutes a game next season, Jason Jones of the Sacramento Bee tweets. That follows the thinking of many scouts who see this draft filled with role players, Jones adds in a separate tweet.

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