Western Rumors: World Peace, Clippers, McGee

Metta World Peace not only made the Lakers‘ opening-day roster, but the club also plans to make him an assistant coach after his playing career, league sources told Yahoo Sports’ Shams Charania. The veteran small forward, who beat out Jabari Brown for the final roster spot, has been mentoring several young Lakers players, including 2014 lottery pick and power forward Julius Randle, Charania adds. World Peace is excited about the possibility of being a coach, ESPN’s Baxter Holmes tweets. “It would be fun,” World Peace said. I mean, who wouldn’t want to be a coach? It’s a great life.”

In other news around the Western Conference:

  • Luc Mbah a Moute secured the Clippers’ final roster spot over veteran forward Chuck Hayes because of his defensive prowess, Dan Woike of the Orange County Register reports. Clippers coach Doc Rivers told Woike that he views Mbah a Moute as a defensive specialist. “He’s one of those guys that can be a great team defender,” Rivers said. The small forward wound up with the Clippers after the Kings voided Mbah a Moute’s free agent deal with the team this summer, claiming he failed his physical because of a shoulder injury, Woike adds.
  • Center JaVale McGee is still “weeks away” from being cleared to play but Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle is encouraged by his progress, Tim MacMahon of ESPNDallas.com tweets. McGee is rehabbing from a left tibial stress fracture. Salah Mejri appears to be the main backup to Zaza Pachulia until McGee returns.
  • Al-Farouq Aminu has made a strong impression on his Trail Blazers teammates with his defensive versatility, according to Joe Freeman of The Oregonian. Aminu was signed as a free agent to a four-year, $30MM deal to be their defensive stopper, Freeman continues. “He’s a jack-of-all-trades, a guy who can do everything,” shooting guard C.J. McCollum said to Freeman. “I think he’s really, really talented defensively. He’s a guy who can guard multiple positions, can guard a point guard, he can get switched on the four or five and hold his own, rebound, block shots, run the floor.” However, he may miss the season opener because of a left hamstring strain, Casey Holdahl of Trailblazers.com reports.
  • Rockets point guard Patrick Beverley is ready for the season opener after a hand injury that required surgery prevented him from playing during the team’s postseason run, Jenny Creech of the Houston Chronicle writes. Beverley missed one preseason game with groin soreness, but averaged 7.7 points and 3.7 assists in seven other preseason outings.

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