Southwest Notes: VanVleet, Mavs’ Sale, Pelicans, Williamson

Fred VanVleet is averaging 37.8 minutes per game, the highest mark of any NBA player besides Philadelphia’s Tyrese Maxey. VanVleet, who signed a whopping three-year, $128.5MM contract to join the Rockets this summer, doesn’t mind a heavy workload.

“I’m a gamer, man,” VanVleet told Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle. “I never want to come out of the game. I’d play 48 if they would let me.”

VanVleet feels he needs to be on the court most of the time to organize his young teammates.

“Some of the things I bring, it’s hard to replace,” VanVleet said. “With such a young team, obviously, I have to do a little bit more. It’s something I have been accustomed to, and actually, I take a lot of pride in it.”

We have more from the Southwest Division:

  • The Mavericks franchise is even more valuable than previously reported. With Mark Cuban selling the majority share of the franchise to Las Vegas Sands Corp., the valuation is expected to be approximately $4 billion, according to Marc Stein (Twitter link). The valuation was previously said to be in the $3.5 billion range. A Board of Governors vote on the proposed sale is reportedly scheduled to take place on Dec. 2o.
  • The Pelicans entered their game against Minnesota on Monday still smarting from their in-season tournament semifinal loss to the Lakers, according to Christian Clark of the New Orleans Times Picayune. They lost by 44 points in a national-televised pounding. “We addressed the game,” coach Willie Green said. “… It was a letdown. It’s not our standard. It’s not who we’ve been. We wanted to get back to practice as soon as we could.”
  • It’s time for Pelicans forward Zion Williamson to show what he’s truly made of, William Guillory of The Athletic opines. After an embarrassing performance against the Lakers, Williamson took hits in the media, particularly for his weight and conditioning. Williamson needs to channel that criticism constructively and learn how to deal with failure, Guillory writes.
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