Antwan Scott

Western Notes: Welch, Davis, Ellis, Selden

Here’s the latest news and notes from the Western Conference:

  • Former Sacramento assistant coach John Welch and the Clippers are in the process of finalizing a deal that will see him join Doc Rivers‘ coaching staff, Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical reports (Twitter link).
  • The Kings held a pre-draft workout today for Zachary Auguste (Notre Dame), Egidijus Mockevicius (Evansville), Wade Baldwin (Vanderbilt), Antwan Scott (Colorado State), Eric McClellan (Gonzaga) and Fred VanVleet (Wichita State), the team announced.
  • Working out for the Kings on Thursday will be Elgin Cook (Oregon), Isaiah Taylor (Texas), Jarrod Uthoff (Iowa), Shaquille Harrison (Tulsa) and Derrick Jones (UNLV), Sean Cunningham of ABC 10 tweets.
  • The Jazz have a private workout scheduled on Thursday for former Michigan State power forward Deyonta Davis, the team announced. Davis is the No. 10 overall prospect according to Jonathan Givony of Draft Express.
  • The Clippers have workouts set for Thursday with Wayne Selden (Kansas), Isaiah Whitehead (Seton Hall), Brandon Austin (NW Florida State), Perry Ellis (Kansas), Kaleb Tarczewski and Tonye Jekiri (Miami), Dan Woike of The Orange County Register tweets.

Pacific Notes: Rondo, Eastman, Lakers, Kings

Veteran point guard Rajon Rondo is eligible for free agency this summer, and while there’s a chance he’ll return to Sacramento, it sounds like those odds would have been very slim if George Karl hadn’t been replaced by Dave Joerger as the team’s head coach. In an appearance on ESPN’s The Jump, Rondo said that the tension between the Kings‘ coaching staff and DeMarcus Cousins was unlike anything he’d seen in his NBA career.

“There were too many distractions on and off the court,” Rondo said. “The organization as a whole, I don’t think was together completely. I think as a team you have to want the best for the next man beside you, and that wasn’t the case with the Sacramento Kings.”

Asked about his free agency, Rondo didn’t rule out a return to the Kings, but suggested he’ll explore his option. The point guard will be prioritizing a landing spot where his teammates are willing to work hard to grow and get better. “I don’t want to be the hardest-working guy in the gym,” Rondo said.

Here’s more from around the Pacific:

  • Longtime basketball coach Kevin Eastman has decided to call it a career, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical (Twitter link). Eastman, who was an assistant on Doc Rivers‘ staff in Boston before joining him with the Clippers, was named L.A.’s vice president of basketball operations in 2014. In his newsletter, he explained his decision to retire from coaching and outlined what he’ll do next.
  • There’s coaching news on Los Angeles’ other squad as well. According to analyst Dave Miller (Twitter link), Jesse Mermuys will join Luke Walton‘s coaching staff with the Lakers. Last season, Mermuys served as the coach of the Raptors 905, Toronto’s D-League affiliate, so the Raps will have to fill that role for 2016/17.
  • Colorado State guard Antwan Scott, who previously worked out for Denver, will be part of a group workout on Wednesday for the Kings, tweets Michael Scotto of Sheridan Hoops.

Western Notes: Clarkson, Spurs, Felton

Jordan Clarkson, who is set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer, wants to remain with the Lakers and be a part of turning the franchise around, Mark Medina of The Los Angeles Daily News relays. “We had two tough years, but I don’t want to be a guy that is afraid and will run away from challenges,” Clarkson said. “I want to be a part of the situation when it turns around because I was here when it was down. I never want to leave.

The young guard also expressed his willingness to take on whatever role the franchise requires of him, Medina adds. “I will do anything a team asks me to do,” Clarkson said. “If it’s to come off the bench, I would impact the game by coming off the bench. If I were to start, I would impact the game as a starter. I would impact the game either way.”

Here’s the latest from out West:

  • The Spurs have explored trading up in the first round of the NBA Draft, Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders relays (on Twitter). It is unclear which teams San Antonio has contacted or who the team may be targeting if it was able to improve is draft position via trade. The Spurs currently own the No. 29 overall pick this June.
  • Former SMU forward Markus Kennedy has a workout scheduled with the Mavericks on June 14th, Kennedy (no relation) tweets.
  • Point guard Raymond Felton, who is an unrestricted free agent this offseason, said that his preference is to re-sign with the Mavericks, Earl K. Sneed of relays (Twitter links). “Of course, this is where I want to be. I’d love to come back here, so hopefully we can make that happen,” Felton said. “It’s a process. … I’m out of it now. My agent and the organization, it’s their situation now.
  • The Nuggets have workouts set for Friday with DeAndre Bembry (St. Joseph’s), Joel Bolomboy (Weber State), Cheick Diallo (Kansas), Taurean Prince (Baylor) and Antwan Scott (Colorado State), the team announced via press release.