Western Notes: Malik-Abu, Catanella, Ollie

N.C. State power forward Abdul Malik-Abu has a predraft workout scheduled for May 7th with the Timberwolves, reports Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com (on Twitter). The 20-year-old is a potential second-round pick this June, with Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress ranking him as the No. 26 sophomore overall. Malik-Abu appeared in 33 games for the Wolfpack and averaged 12.9 points, 8.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists in 28.3 minutes per outing. His shooting line on the campaign was .490/.000/.630.

Here’s more from out West:

  • Ken Catanella, who was named the Kings‘ assistant GM on Thursday, will be Sacramento’s salary cap specialist in addition to assisting with personnel decisions and day-to-day operations, writes Jason Jones of The Sacramento Bee. Catanella said he’s excited to work with executive Vlade Divac and assist in his vision for the franchise, Jones adds. “For me it’s all a part of wanting to be bigger part of something bigger than ourselves,” Catanella said.
  • Despite the competition between franchises for available head coaches, the Rockets don’t intend to rush their search, tweets Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle. “We’re going to get the coach search right. We’re not going to do something quickly,” GM Daryl Morey told reporters.
  • Morey also told the media that unnamed NBA teams have put out negative information about the Rockets in order to hurt them in free agency, while downplaying the chemistry issues Houston has reportedly had this season, Calvin Watkins of ESPN.com relays (ESPN Now link).
  • UConn coach Kevin Ollie, who is reportedly interested in the Lakers’ vacant coaching post, told Christian Vital, a player he is recruiting, that he intends to remain at the university next season, as Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv relays. “Basically [Ollie], he’s texted me before 9 every day this week,” Vital told Scout.com. “Just letting me know about he Lakers situation and that he loves me and he’s staying at UConn. That really means something to me, to have that kind of relationship with the head coach, knowing he has a million things to do.
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