HoopsHype rumors

December 23, 2012 | 08:56 PM ET Update
December 23, 2012 | 05:48 PM ET Update

The Kings have been reluctant to deal Cousins. He's been considered the key to the Kings' rebuilding project, but on the court he's regressed this season while the off-the-court issues have accelerated. Teams that have been interested in Cousins in the past include Houston and Detroit. But would Houston want to break up what they've built for Cousins now? Sacramento Bee

Shelvin Mack is returning to the organization that drafted him 34th overall out of Butler in 2011 and waived him before the start of his second season in order to go with more seasoned veteran, Jannero Pargo. Mack is expected to sign a non-guaranteed contract before the Wizards return to practice on Tuesday, according to sources with knowledge of the deal. Washington Post

Privately players have wanted coach Keith Smart to take a harder stance with the third-year center. Someone summed it up with me saying if you think Cousins' is a handful in games, you should see his act in practice. Well if Cousins is that taxing on his teammates, I expect to see a very energized Kings team this evening. Sacramento Bee

Cousins was Greig's only big-name client. Greig made looking out for Cousins well-being a priority. He visited Cousins regularly (he was in town this month), cooking meals and was important in making sure many of Cousins' off-the-court needs were met. Greig was one of Cousins' biggest defenders, speaking on his behalf even when Cousins appeared to be clearly in the wrong and did his best to present Cousins' side in controversial situations. But even Greig has had trouble getting through to Cousins lately. Sacramento Bee

Boston Celtics big man Chris Wilcox could miss three to four weeks, Doc Rivers projected, with an ulnar collateral sprain in his right thumb. Wilcox suffered the injury during last Tuesday's game against the Chicago Bulls. He will not travel with the Celtics on the upcoming road trip. CSNNE.com

December 23, 2012 | 03:01 PM ET Update

Adrian Wojnarowski: Washington will sign Shelvin Mack out of D-League, sources tell Y!. He's averaging 20 ppg w/ Maine. Wiz drafted him in '11, cut him in '12. Twitter @WojYahooNBA

Patrick Beverley is expected to be released by Spartak St. Petersburg in order to join Houston Rockets! For the last 10 days the two teams were in negotiations and finally the deal was made, despite the fact that Beverley is the most important player in the Russian club’s roster which still is in the hunt of the VTB League and Eurocup. EuroHoops.net

The Oklahoma City Thunder has recalled guard Reggie Jackson, forward Perry Jones and guard DeAndre Liggins from the Tulsa 66ers of the NBA Development League, it was announced today by Executive Vice President and General Manager Sam Presti. Including his 37-point (14-of-19 FGs) performance last night versus the Canton Charge, Jackson has appeared in three games (all starts) with the 66ers this season, averaging 28.0 points, 7.3 rebounds and 8.3 assists in 38.0 minutes. NBA.com

Fisher has long been known to be very tight with his family, but it's funny how he finds himself longing for his LA home now that he is on a team that appears to be going nowhere. I'm sure that's just a coincidence. When he signed to play with the Oklahoma City Thunder last season for a stretch-drive to the playoffs being homesick never seemed to be an issue. He never complained about missing home as the Thunder went all the way to the NBA Finals. Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Coach Mike Woodson said Amar’e Stoudemire would not play his first game of the season Sunday when the Knicks host the Minnesota Timberwolves. Stoudemire, who had surgery on his left knee seven weeks ago, did not practice with the team Saturday, but he did receive treatment at the team’s training facility in Greenburgh, N.Y. Woodson said he and Stoudemire discussed before Saturday’s practice what Stoudemire’s role would be when he returned. “We did talked in great detail, but nothing has been defined yet in terms of when he’s going to return,” Woodson said. “At this point, we’re still trying to hash out when he’s ready to play and he’s not ready yet.” New York Times

December 23, 2012 | 09:57 AM ET Update

Fegan is one of the most powerful agents in the NBA, and his most recent high-profile situation is the very sort of scenario the Kings – and every other team, for that matter – would like to avoid. Fegan was instrumental in Dwight Howard's exodus from Orlando to the Lakers last summer, having presented the Magic with a list of teams (Brooklyn, Dallas, and the Lakers) to which Howard was willing to re-sign if traded. Fegan's last extensive dealings with the Kings were in 2009, and they were far from positive for either side. USA Today Sports

There are plenty of teams calling the Cavaliers about Varejao because not only is he having an All-Star season, he also has a very reasonable contract. This season, Varejao is making just $8.4 million, next season he’ll make $9.1 million and the following year he has a $9.8 million team option. HoopsWorld

Rather than just trading Calderon’s expiring contract, league sources say that the Raptors would like to package the veteran point guard with Andrea Bargnani to complete a splashy blockbuster deal. Toronto failed to land a big-name small forward last summer and they would likely target a similar player if they shop a package of Bargnani and Calderon as expected. As the trade deadline gets closer, don’t be surprised if there are plenty of rumors surfacing involving Bargnani and Calderon. HoopsWorld

Shortly after losing to the Detroit Pistons, 96-89, on Saturday at Verizon Center – their seventh straight defeat to drop to a franchise-worst 3-22 – the Wizards released Barron and Livingston to open up two roster spots that the team plans to fill with backcourt help, according to league sources. Washington Post

Darren Wolfson: Source says James Anderson is now on #Twolves radar. Lazar Hayward worked out today. Signing not imminent for now. Twitter @DarrenWolfson

Kahn would not offer specifics on any individual players the team might target, but he did mention that he is looking for a type of player that is similar to Howard or Malcolm Lee. “I think when you think of the team right now,” Kahn said. “We’ve lost Malcolm—in all likelihood for the season—and we’ve lost Josh, who isn’t here right now. So when you think of that profile, somebody who is 6-foot-5, 6-foot-6, 6-foot-7, long-armed in Josh’s case, defensive-minded in Malcolm’s case, capable of helping us a little bit offensively in both guys’ case... we’re missing two people, not one. So I think that’s the profile of who we’re looking for. We’ll obviously move reasonably quickly, but we want to be thorough.” NBA.com

Fisher praised Cuban for his support and for granting his release. He also thanked coach Rick Carlisle and his Mavs teammates: ”I have made decisions in the past, leaving money and opportunity on the table, and I will need to do that again. My family is my priority and that is where I choose to be. I won’t close the possibility that I will play again, however for now my family and being close to them remains the priority.” NBA.com

Dallas Mavericks guard Dahntay Jones said he recently had a talk with Derek Fisher and discovered how much the 17-year veteran guard was missing his family. But little did Jones know that Fisher would ask the Mavs to release him from his contract, which they did on Saturday. “I knew how he felt about the situation, because we spoke about it, but I didn’t know the severity of the events,'' Jones told the Star- Telegram. "However, this situation did come out of the blue.’’ Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Clearly the Kings felt his apology was not enough this time around. And it appears that his behavior and actions are beginning to wear thin. “Deeds become important now,” said the Kings head coach when asked if Cousins’ continued apologies still hold credibility. “It’s not so much words. And I think that’s where you’re trying to get him or any person to get (to understand) the deeds of it. Because everyone will see your deeds and then there will be more believability there than just words you’re saying.” Cowbell Kingdom

After finding out the news about his teammate, rookie Thomas Robinson adhered to his coach’s message. “I think (my reaction) was pretty much, ‘We have to work and stay together as a team, come out and have a good practice,” said No. 0. Forward James Johnson echoed a similar sentiment. “I just know we have to get stronger as a team and we have to start to trust each other a lot more,” he said. “We’re going to have some guys step up, including myself, to be able to win games.” The Kings Blog

James told FOX Sports Florida that, while he has thought seriously several times about entering the dunk contest during All-Star Weekend in his nine previous seasons, it never will occur. "No," said James, who turns 28 on Dec. 30. "It's over with. I'm getting too old for that. ... There were times when I wanted to do it. But I came into All-Star Weekend a few times banged up and I didn't want to risk further injury." FOXSports Florida

"We are what our record is. Simple as that," said Rondo. "As of now, you can't say we're better than what we are. Games we should have won, we've lost and only a couple games vice versa, so we've just got to keep finding a way. ESPN.com

"Tingling in my legs all the way down to my feet," Howard said as he described his current state. "There's times when sometimes I really can't even feel my feet. (The doctors) said that's going to happen. It takes at least nine months for you to get strength back in your legs and all that stuff. So I'm still in that process." USA Today Sports

Steve Nash hit his first shot, hit his last shot and helped a lot of Lakers growth happen in between. “We’re a completely different team with him out there,” Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni said of Nash. “He’s done that his whole career, so it’s not really that much of a surprise. He’ll even get better, and he’ll get used to the guys.” When the Lakers’ overtime victory over Golden State was complete Saturday night, Nash assessed the damage he’d done to himself by going 41 minutes despite not having played a game in seven weeks because of fractured left fibula. “There’s some soreness and some pain but right now it’s OK,” Nash said. “It’s manageable. As long as it’s manageable I’ll just keep going.” Orange County Register

Forget about NBA standout JaVale McGee suiting up for the Smart Gilas national team. The Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas has decided to look for another foreign player to beef up the team, passing up the chance to put the 7-foot Denver Nuggets center in a Philippine uniform for the 2013 Fiba Asia Championship. Inquirer.net

On Saturday, before the Blazers would go out and beat the Phoenix Suns 96-93 for their fifth consecutive victory, Stotts sent the following: “It is the present that holds the next step to the future, and each present step is independently as important as the next. Accomplish today.’’ “It’s pretty cool, huh?’’ reserve guard Ronnie Price said, scrolling past all the messages, which go back to October. “A lot of coaches, they don’t put forth the effort to be involved in their team that way. So it’s neat.’’ Oregonian

Will Conroy is back in town, doing scouting work for David Kahn and the Minnesota front office. His first assignment is some D-League scouting, and he will work on several other projects before returning to Washington in April to finish his undergraduate degree. NBA.com

About 18 months ago, as Deron was about to make a career transition, he was blindsided by life-changing news. His oldest son, D.J., a child often attached to his father’s hip, had been diagnosed with autism. There had been troubling signs before the diagnosis. D.J.’s speech regressed, and he began mumbling instead of using words. He also wouldn’t make eye contact or respond to normal cues. After ruling out problems ranging from deafness to brain tumors, a doctor told the concerned parents that all signs pointed to autism — just as Williams was about to leave for Turkey to play during the NBA lockout. New York Daily News

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