Western Notes: Williams, Abu, Pope

The Mavericks are pleased with the production they received this season from point guard Deron Williams, despite the veteran struggling with nagging injuries throughout the campaign, and they would like to see him remain with the team next season, Earl K. Sneed of Mavs.com relays. “I thought his year was extremely productive, you know, other than some of the health issues he had to work through,” coach Rick Carlisle said of Williams. “We most likely wouldn’t have won a game in the playoff series had he not played in Game 2 and come out and gotten 11 points in the first four minutes, or whatever it was. I mean, that was the only time we had a lead in the entire series, and his game in Utah was the one that got us in the playoffs. You know, he was a 20-plus point scorer that night, and it was his second game back from being out two weeks. So, I want to see him healthy. You know, when players get healthy, they’re happy, they compete better and they’re going to play better. But I thoroughly enjoyed working with him. He’s a pro and his family are terrific people. And of course, we’d like to see him back.” Williams reportedly plans to turn down his player option worth more than $5.621MM and hit free agency to seek a multiyear contract this summer.

Here’s more from out West:

  • The Spurs‘ success has made their personnel in high demand around the league, and while the team is happy for the success of its personnel, it does create more offseason work since the franchise needs to replace those it has lost, writes Jeff McDonald of The San Antonio Express-News. “Like right now we have a couple of guys we have got to replace,” coach Gregg Popovich said. “[GM] R.C. [Buford] and I will think about that at the end of the season. But it does cause some disruption and work to try to get it back.” San Antonio has lost front office staffers Sean Marks to the Nets and Scott Layden to the Wolves since February, with both men being named GM of their respective teams.
  • North Carolina State sophomore power forward Abdul-Malik Abu will work out for the Timberwolves this weekend, Adam Zagoria of SNY.tv reports (via Twitter). Jonathan Givony of DraftExpress ranks him as the No. 25 overall sophomore after a campaign that saw him average 12.9 points, 8.8 rebounds and 1.3 assists in 28.3 minutes per contest to accompany a shooting line of .490/.000/.630.
  • San Diego State sophomore small forward Malik Pope has a workout scheduled with the Clippers for this weekend, Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com relays (on Twitter). Pope is the No. 25 overall sophomore according to Givony and the No. 46 player overall according to Chad Ford of ESPN.com.
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