The Kings say the door will likely remain open for Charles Carmouche to come back to Sydney after the point guard was granted immediate leave to return to the US.
Carmouche was granted leave because of "personal and emotional issues". In a significant blow to the Kings' play-off hopes, the guard met coach Shane Heal and other Kings staff on Thursday and the parties agreed to let the player leave on medical grounds.
"The club have supported his decision to be with his family during this difficult period," the Kings said in a statement. "He will be heading back to the USA immediately."
The Kings will have to play Cairns and Townsville in the "Sunshine Swing" this weekend without Carmouche. The club will assess on Monday "all options available to them over the last five minor rounds of the season before finals", the statement said.
Heal said he was "really disappointed" to lose Carmouche, who has been one of the side's most dynamic players and took on more responsibility when fellow import Jesse Sanders was let go for the incoming NBA star Sam Young in November.
"We respect and understand the difficult position he is in," Heal said. "Charles is a quality guy and has been a terrific team mate and we all support his decision."
A team spokesman said it was possible Carmouche would return "but it's very much up in the air".
Kings general manager Rod Harys said the club backed the player.
"The Sydney Kings are very supportive of Charles and the club wishes him all the best in this difficult time," Harys said. "We ask you to respect Charles' privacy at this difficult time."
Carmouche was drafted for the 2013-14 season as a 192-centimetre shooting guard from New Orleans. He played for Louisiana State University, where he averaged 10.7 points and 3.6 rebounds per game, and shot at 37 per cent from three point range. He achieved similar numbers for the Kings.
It's a critical time in the season for the Kings, who are perched in fourth place with a 50 per cent record after suffering a heavy defeat at home to Wollongong last Saturday night, as the season enters the home stretch.