Southwest Notes: Howard, McCallum, Lucas

After being the most coveted free agent on the market in 2013, the RocketsDwight Howard is generating little buzz with his potential 2016 free agency, writes Brian Schmitz of The Orlando Sentinel. Howard signed a four-year deal with Houston worth more than $87MM, but has a player option for 2016-17. With the salary cap expected to soar next summer, he will likely test the market once again. Schmitz argues that the lack of excitement about Howard’s availability signals either that he’s a lock to stay in Houston or that other franchises don’t want to make a large investment in a soon-to-be 30-year-old center with a history of back and knee problems. The columnist speculates that Houston would prefer that Howard sign a short-term contract, but probably will have to give him a long-term deal in excess of $100MM to keep him on the roster.

There’s more from the Southwest Division:

  • Ray McCallum could be an important addition for the Spurs if Tony Parker has another injury-plagued season, writes Buck Harvey of The San Antonio Express-News. San Antonio acquired McCallum in a July 9th trade, sending a 2016 second-round pick to Sacramento in return. Harvey notes that the Spurs don’t believe McCallum is as good a defender as Cory Joseph, the man he replaced, but they think he can effectively run the team if anything happens to Parker.
  • Kalin Lucas, who made a brief appearance with the Grizzlies last season, will spend another season with Kolejliler Ankara of the Turkish Basketball League, according to Enea Trapani of Sportando. Lucas played in just one game with Memphis before being waived November 20th.
  • Despite starting all six games in summer league, the MavericksJustin Anderson has a long way to go to earn playing time in Dallas, writes Earl K. Sneed of The first-round pick out of Virginia says the summer experience was beneficial, but he understands the learning curve ahead. “They know exactly what I’m capable of, and I want to be really good at things I’m already pretty good at,” Anderson said. “So, I just want to take that next step, being good defensively on the ball and off the ball, rotating and then being able to operate out of those corners, because that’s where I think our front office and coaching staff think I can be effective.”
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