Reel­ing and deal­ing? Could be

Lak­ers, com­ing off worst sea­son, might be pur­su­ing Cousins. But that’s just a ru­mor.

Los Angeles Times - - SPORTS - By Brod­er­ick Turner

A song by the 1980s group Timex So­cial Club called “Ru­mors” could just as easily be the na­tional an­them for the NBA.

One of the lyrics in the song be­gins, “How do ru­mors get started?” Another asks, “Did you hear that one about . . . ?”

Fill in the blank and the ru­mor can ap­ply to just about any NBA team, or player, and can be started by any as­sort­ment of peo­ple.

With the NBA draft on the hori­zon Thurs­day, the

Lak­ers on Mon­day be­came one of the teams in­volved in the ru­mor mill, along with the Sacra­mento Kings and Or­lando Magic, ac­cord­ing to NBA ex­ec­u­tives who were not au­tho­rized to speak pub­licly about the mat­ter.

The Philadelphia 76ers and Bos­ton Celtics, two teams known for mak­ing deals, also have been men­tioned in the pre­draft ru­mor mill.

It’s all a part of how some gen­eral man­agers and agents do busi­ness.

A story cir­cu­lat­ing Mon­day in­di­cated the Lak­ers were try­ing to ac­quire Kings cen­ter DeMar­cus Cousins, a po­ten­tial deal that could in­clude a third team, such as the Magic, and in­volve Los An­ge­les’ No. 2 over­all pick in the first round.

It is a deal the Lak­ers could po­ten­tially pull off on July 1, when they f in­ally get salary- cap space. It would re­quire that they draft a player with the No. 2 pick, sign him and then trade him.

But Vlade Di­vac, Sacra­mento’s top front- of­fice ex­ec­u­tive, told the Sacra­mento Bee that trad­ing the 24- yearold Cousins, who is to make $ 14.72 mil­lion next sea­son, “is not hap­pen­ing.”

The Magic’s part in the deal could in­volve send­ing cen­ter Nikola Vuce­vic to the Kings. But an Eastern Con­fer­ence ex­ec­u­tive said Or­lando had no in­ter­est in do­ing that deal.

League ex­ec­u­tives also said the Celtics were try­ing to move up in the draft, us­ing their two f irst- round picks and two sec­ond- round picks as bait.

The ex­ec­u­tives said the Celtics were look­ing to trade point guard Mar­cus Smart and the Nos. 16 and 28 picks in the first round to Philadelphia for cen­ter/ for­ward Ner­lens Noel and the No. 3 pick. But the 76ers, the ex­ec­u­tives said, weren’t in­ter­ested.

Ex­ec­u­tives said teams with mul­ti­ple picks are try­ing to trade some of them and move up in the draft. The 76ers, for in­stance, have six draft picks — one in the f irst round and f ive in the sec­ond round, Nos. 35, 37, 47, 58 and 60 — and may look to pack­age some of those or even sell a few of them.

The Clip­pers are a team look­ing to buy a sec­on­dround pick.

Among lo­cal col­lege play­ers, UCLA’s Kevon Looney and Nor­man Pow­ell are ex­pected to be drafted Thurs­day.

Looney is a 6- foot- 9 for­ward whom many scouts view as a “La­mar Odom type” who can make plays. Looney, who will be in the draft green room Thurs­day night at the Bar­clays Cen­ter in New York, is ex­pected to go in the top 20 picks.

Pow­ell is a 6- 4 guard whom many scouts see as a “Tony Allen type” who can be a strong de­fender. Most pro­jec­tions have Pow­ell go­ing in the sec­ond round.

Paul Sancya As­so­ci­ated Press

DeMAR­CUS COUSINS is an All- Star cen­ter. Would Lak­ers trade the No. 2 pick to get him?

Pho­tog r aphs by Wally Skalij Los An­ge­les Times

SOME SCOUTS de­scribe UCLA for­ward Kevon Looney as a “La­mar Odom type.” He could be a top- 20 pick.

UCLA GUARD Nor­man Pow­ell led the Bru­ins in scor­ing as a se­nior, but NBA ex­ec­u­tives like his de­fense.

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