Southwest Notes: Doncic, Pelicans, Silas, Allen

Luka Doncic played Saturday’s bronze medal game with an injured left wrist, but he tells Callie Caplan of The Dallas Morning News that it’s nothing Mavericks fans need to worry about. Doncic hit his wrist on plexiglass at courtside during Thursday’s semifinal contest. He had it wrapped in ice afterward and used several strips of tape to stabilize the wrist and forearm area for the bronze medal showdown.

“My wrist is going to be fine,” Doncic said. “I need a couple of days off from basketball. I’ve had every day basketball since the beginning of NBA season. A lot of games, so I need a couple days off.”

Doncic will return to Slovenia and will host a Mavericks contingent next week that includes owner Mark Cuban, new head coach Jason Kidd, general manager Nico Harrison and special advisor Dirk Nowitzki. They will finalize a five-year max-salary extension for Doncic that projects to be worth up to $207MM.

After that meeting, Kidd and director of player health and performance Casey Smith will head to Latvia to meet with Kristaps Porzingis, tweets Marc Stein of Substack.

There’s more from the Southwest Division:

  • The Pelicans were hoping to make a splash in free agency, but the results have been disappointing, writes Scott Kushner of New Orleans was rumored to be in contention for an established point guard such as Chris Paul or Kyle Lowry, but instead the team got rid of three starters with no obvious upgrade in return. Kushner notes that it’s dangerous for a team in the NBA’s second-smallest market with no tradition of success to rely on signing free agents.
  • Rockets coach Stephen Silas is ready to focus on basketball again after spending 10 days in quarantine following a positive COVID-19 test, per Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle. Silas, who wasn’t able to be in the draft room or attend the post-draft press conference, expressed his enthusiasm about the team’s four first-round picks — Jalen Green, Alperen Sengun, Usman Garuba and Josh Christopher. “I was excited to get all four guys because I had done research on all for of them and studied them. We had talked a lot about them,” Silas said. “It all worked out almost as a perfect world for us as far as who we got and where we got them and now looking forward with them.”
  • The Grizzlies received a B-minus from ESPN’s Kevin Pelton for Friday’s trade that sent Grayson Allen to the Bucks in exchange for Sam Merrill and two second round picks. Pelton states that Allen wasn’t in Memphis’ long-term plans and may not have gotten another contract after his rookie deal expires next summer.
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