Pacific Notes: Booker, Lakers, Durant

The Suns haven’t experienced much success this season, but Devin Booker believes the team’s future is bright, as he tells Michael Scotto of Basketball Insiders.

“We have a really good young core,” Booker said. “Our young players are developing, including myself, very well. Marquese Chriss, Dragan Bender, Tyler Ulis have been getting some time now. And then we have a mix of really good veterans, Tyson Chandler, Jared Dudley, Leandro Barbosa, P.J. Tucker; they’re leading us on the right way. Each and every day, they push us every day in practice. They’re patient with us. We’re messing up a lot. That’s what you expect coming into this league, playing against grown men. We’re still learning, but at the same time, I think the future is really bright here.”

Phoenix has a record of 15-33 and currently sits in the second spot in our Reserve Standings. Here’s more from the Pacific Division:

  • Eric Pincus of Basketball Insiders examines the trade market for Lou Williams and Nick Young, and finds it difficult to envision the Lakers netting a first-round pick for either of the veterans. Pincus believes Los Angeles could flip one of them for a young player with untapped potential akin to the team’s 2014 Steve Blake trade. In that deal, the Lakers brought in Kent Bazemore, a player who flashed promise once he was given meaningful minutes.
  • The Lakers may need to move Williams and Young in order to open up the cap space necessary to sign a max-level player, such as Blake Griffin, Pincus writes in the same piece. Young holds a player option for next season worth slightly under $5.7MM and Williams will make $7MM next season in the final year of his deal.
  • Kevin Durant told Stephen Curry to stop trying so hard to incorporate him in the Warriors‘ offense, as Chris Haynes of relays. “I just said to [Curry], ‘Don’t worry about me,'” Durant told Haynes. “I’ll figure it out around you. You’re the engine of this team, and I know that. I’m not trying to come over and feel like everything just revolves around me. Just do you, man. I’m going to play around you. I’ve played this game long enough. I know how to score. I know how to find the ball. Just go out there and play your game.’ And that’s what he’s been doing.”
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