Southeast Notes: Meeks, Vogel, Calderon, Weber

Magic guard Jodie Meeks is ready to return after being sidelined since January 18th with a dislocated right thumb, Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated posts on ESPN Now. Meeks has received medical clearance and should be available for Monday’s contest with the Sixers. Injuries have limited Meeks to 24 games this season, after he played just three in Detroit a year ago. A part-time starter, Meeks is averaging 8.9 points per night and shooting better than 40% from 3-point range. He is headed toward free agency this summer.

There’s more tonight from the Southeast Division:

  • Frank Vogel has overseen a disappointing season in his first year as Magic coach, but he is winning over his players with the way he handles adversity, writes John Denton of“He still fights for us and that makes me want to fight for him,’’ said Aaron Gordon. “I’ve got total respect for Frank because even after a tough loss like that one [against Golden State on Thursday], he can still smile and we can have a conversation. That’s big. As good a coach as he is, he’s an even better person.’’
  • Jose Calderon has made an immediate impact since joining the Hawks, according to KL Chouinard of The veteran point guard has provided scoring, playmaking and leadership as Atlanta won three of its first four games after claiming him off waivers. “Sometimes when you get to this time of the season, the problem is that you don’t have the practice time,” Calderon said. “So it’s kind of like my practice being out there [in games]. It’s a little bit more difficult because you don’t want to make mistakes. You’re still learning what your teammates are used to doing.” 
  • The “Havoc” system that Briante Weber learned at Virginia Commonwealth helped him land an extended contract with the Hornets, relays David Scott of The Charlotte Observer. Weber agreed to a two-year deal after nearly two full seasons of D-League play and 10-day contracts. He has developed a reputation as a defensive specialist who brings a lot of energy to the game. “I’m using my calling card, what got me here,” Weber said. “My defensive abilities, my tenacity. I want those things to help me stay in this league for a long time. They’re what helped me get this shot.”

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