Southwest Notes: Collins, Wembanyama, Green, Wood, Williamson

Spurs big man Zach Collins believes the team’s league-worst defense will instantly improve next season with the addition of Victor Wembanyama, he told Tom Orsborn of the San Antonio Express-News. “If he was just that tall and he wasn’t good at basketball, we would be better defensively,” Collins said. “But the fact that he is obviously very smart on defense and uses his length really well, it’s going to be so much better for us.”

Wembanyama had eight blocks in the first two Spurs’ Summer League games. “I think it will give our guards so much more confidence to get up and pressure guys knowing we have him back there,” Collins said.

We have more from the Southwest Division:

  • The Mavericks are expected to engage in rookie scale contract extension talks with Josh Green, according to Marc Stein in a Substack article. The two sides had an agreement that they would begin talks later in free agency. Green will be a restricted free agent next summer if an extension is not reached.
  • In the same piece, Stein reports the Mavericks would have some interest in doing a sign-and-trade deal involving Christian Wood but only if they get a player they really want in return. They are already hard-capped and would be in some danger of surpassing the luxury tax threshold if they bring in another non-minimum player, which would give them pause regarding a Wood sign-and-trade.
  • Pelicans VP of basketball operations David Griffin claims his team never discussed a Zion Williamson trade this offseason. “We never had a single (trade) conversation that Zion was part of,” Griffin said on a SiriusXM NBA Radio interview (hat tip to RealGM). Griffin also said there’s no disconnect between Williamson and the franchise. “I would say that it’s as good as it’s ever been,” Griffin said of Williamson’s relationship with the team.
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