Sacramento Kings center DeMarcus Cousins was suspended indefinitely by the NBA club on Saturday for unprofessional behavior and conduct detrimental to the team.
Kings president of basketball operations Geoff Petrie announced the punishment one day after Cousins exchanged angry words in the locker room with coach Keith Smart at half-time of the Kings' 97-85 road loss to the Los Angeles Clippers on Friday.
Smart decided to bench Cousins for the entire second half, ordering him not to join the other players when they returned to the court for the second half of the game. After the game, an apologetic Cousins said his outburst was wrong.
Cousins, in his third NBA campaign, is averaging a team-high 16.6 points plus 9.5 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.35 steals a game after 23 games. He is hitting 41.4 percent from the field and 76.9 percent from the free throw line.
Cousins was suspended for one game earlier this month by the NBA for hitting Dallas guard O.J. Mayo in the groin and suspended two games in November by the league after a confrontation with San Antonio Spurs announcer Sean Elliott.