Pacific Notes: Smith, Stephenson, Hibbert, Crawford

The Clippers feel as though they’d be better in the long run if they could trade offseason acquisitions Josh Smith and Lance Stephenson, who are dissatisfied with their respective roles on the team, Bleacher Report’s Ric Bucher says in a video dispatch (scroll to three-minute mark) that echoes his report from December. The team apparently gauged their value on the trade market as far back as November, though coach/executive Doc Rivers denied it. In any case, Bucher and Bleacher Report colleague Howard Beck identify the Clippers, Bulls and Lakers as likely sellers, with the Kings and Rockets set to become buyers at the trade deadline. Sacramento has been “active and aggressive,” according to Bucher. See more from the Pacific Division:

  • Roy Hibbert likes L.A. and has maintained a professional demeanor throughout a losing season, writes Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times. The Lakers are reportedly trying to find a trade that would send Hibbert to a playoff team. The center acknowledges that it hasn’t been easy this year after playing on much more successful teams in Indiana. “It’s rough,” Hibbert said. “The skeletons are there to be a really good team. It’s just not going the way we want it to be. You see glimpses but it’s been rough.”
  • Jamal Crawford cited familiarity and the desire for a “pit bull” negotiator for his recent decision to rehire agent Aaron Goodwin of Goodwin Sports Management, having moved on from a brief time with the Wasserman Media Group, the agency he hired in the offseason. TNT’s David Aldridge has the details in his Morning Tip column for The Clippers sixth man is poised for free agency in the summer.
  • Draymond Green has far surpassed expectations, and in addition to his own effort, he’s been fortunate to arrive in the NBA just as small-ball truly took off and to land with a Warriors franchise that believes in him, as Steve Aschburner of examines. “Obviously I’m blessed to be here in a situation with Golden State where what I brought to the team was needed,” Green said. “And appreciated. I know that’s important. Sometimes going to a certain franchise can ruin a career if you’re not with the right team. I was blessed to come to a great situation. A great franchise that appreciated the way that I do. So I’ve been able to become the player I’ve become.”

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