Artest joins Kings; Stojakovic debut unlikely Friday

Ron Artest joined the Sacramento Kings in New York on Thursday and traveled with them to Boston with the hope of making his debut for his new team Friday night against the Celtics.

The Kings and Indiana Pacers waived physicals when they finalized the Peja Stojakovic-Artest trade Wednesday, but required that each player report to his new team within 48 hours.

Stojakovic was planning to fly from Sacramento to Indiana on Friday, joining the Pacers about two hours before tipoff of their game against Cleveland. He was not expected to play against the Cavs, however, and would likely make his debut Tuesday at Washington, agent David Bauman said.

If Stojakovic were to have travel difficulties that prevented him from joining the Pacers by 6 p.m. Friday, the Pacers would have the option of alerting the league office to seek a delay in having the trade finalized. If that were to happen, Artest's debut for the Kings might be pushed back to Sunday in Toronto.

Artest was planning to meet with Kings owners Joe and Gavin Maloof and general manager Geoff Petrie late Thursday in Boston.