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- There has been a dramatic turn of events in Sacramento. Coach Paul Westphal has just released a statement announcing that second-year power forward/center DeMarcus Cousins has requested a trade and will not be in uniform tonight for the Sacramento Kings:
“Whenever a new season begins, in any sport, there is great hope that everything will progress in only a steady, upward direction. As we all know, it seldom happens like that in this life! As coaches, we can only ask that our players do everything they can to improve themselves as individuals and teammates. If they do this with all their hearts, we live with the results. Everything that happens on a team does not become known to the public. This is how it should be. However, when a player continually, aggressively, lets it be known that he is unwilling/unable to embrace traveling in the same direction as his team, it cannot be ignored indefinitely. DeMarcus Cousins has demanded to be traded. In the best interest of our team as we go forward, he has been directed by me, with the support of management, to stay home from the New Orleans game tonight.”
- Before the game, Westphal elaborated on the Cousins situation, “He can only have so many chances and something has to be done. And it’s time something has to be done.” Westphal is not sure if Cousins will travel with the team on their two game road trip that begins on Tuesday in Memphis. He did say that Cousins needed to do some “soul searching” and that he hopes that, “DeMarcus has a change of heart and joins up with full reinstatement, that’s really up to him and I hope that.”
- With DeMarcus Cousins out, Coach Westphal said that J.J. Hickson will start in the Kings front court next to Chuck Hayes.
- Hornets Coach Monty Williams confirmed that guard Eric Gordon will miss tonight’s game against the Kings with a bruised right knee. “Eric’s not available tonight because he’s still working out,” Williams said, “He’s going to get his situation where he’s not worried about his knee and we’re not worried about it. Once he’s done that, we’ll feel comfortable putting him out there.” Marco Belinelli will start alongside Jarrett Jack in Gordon’s absence.