We also know that the Mavericks philosophically believe that adding a physically imposing center is a key _ if not the key _ step toward returning to the NBA’s elite. We know this from their failed attempts to land big-fish free agents Dwight Howard (2013), DeAndre Jordan (2015) and Hassan Whiteside (2016). Howard and Jordan, not incidentally, were represented by Cousins’ agent, Dan Fegan, who has a strong working relationship with the Mavericks franchise. If you’re doubting the strength of that relationship after Dallas’ failed attempts to sign Howard and Jordan, look no further than Frisco for a clue: On the roster of the D-League Texas Legends is 6-11, 255-pound Jaleel Cousins, DeMarcus’ 23-year-old brother. Unfortunately, the Legends are on a road trip that had them playing in Santa Cruz, Calif. on Monday and on Friday in Idaho. Otherwise, the Cousins brothers would have had a nice in-season reunion because the Kings have been in Dallas for the past three days.
As a committed member of the Kings with a stated love for Sacramento, DeMarcus understandably has no desire to talk at length about the prospect of some day playing for the Mavericks _ and in the same organization as his brother. But when I asked DeMarcus if he believes Jaleel is in a good situation, his answer sounded like good news for fans who like the idea of the Mavericks acquiring DeMarcus. “Absolutely,” DeMarcus said. “It’s the Mavericks. It’s one of the best franchises in the league. Cuban’s a great guy. Rick’s a great guy. He’s under some good people. I’m confident in the franchise and I’m confident in his abilities, as well. I think it’s a good situation for him.”
After the Houston Rockets matched the Brooklyn Nets’ offer sheet and retained restricted free agent Donatas Motiejunas, the 7-footer is refusing to report for his physical exam and return to the team. “We won’t be reporting,” agent B.J. Armstrong of Wasserman Media Group told The Vertical. Armstrong informed Rockets general manager Daryl Morey of the decision on Tuesday morning. The move comes less than 24 hours after the Rockets matched the base of a four-year, $31 million offer sheet. Houston had been expecting Motiejunas, 26, to show up on Tuesday morning to undergo and pass a physical exam needed to sign and activate him. Motiejunas refused and has no intention of rejoining the Rockets, Armstrong said. If Motiejunas continues to stay away, the Rockets have two options: leave open the current agreement and wait him out, or cancel the deal and return Motiejunas to restricted free agency. Under league rules, the Nets are unable to sign Motiejunas for a full year.