Maloofs Surprised by Westphal’s Statement
Kings co-owner Joe Maloof told SI.com that Paul Westphal’s statement alleging that second-year center DeMarcus Cousins demanded a trade was not approved before being released.
The statement clearly played a significant part in Westphal’s ousting Thursday, and Maloof’s revelation contradicts what was said by Westphal in the wake of his decision to send Cousins home for Sunday’s game against the Hornets. Westphal previously indicated that team president Geoff Petrie had spoken with the Maloofs about the letter, but Joe said that was not the case. Petrie and Westphal did not return calls for comment, but a source with knowledge of the statement said Petrie certainly played a part in its publication.
The statement not only detailed the alleged trade demand, but was also highly critical of the mercurial player who was sent home.
“I didn’t know about any letter,” Maloof said by phone Thursday. “We didn’t know about any of that. … We didn’t know about the statement or anything like that.