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Tag:DeMarcus Cousins
Posted on: January 4, 2012 9:38 am
 

Report: Celtics have called about Cousins

By Matt Moore

The Boston Celtics have been involved in a half-dozen trade rumors since the lockout ended. It's assumed that they're pursuing one of the 2012 top free agents, but it's also apparent that they're just looking towards the future after the Big 3 to build a core going forward.

Meanwhile, the Kings continue to clash with temperamental power forward DeMarcus Cousins, even as Cousins rejoined the team off the bench Tuesday night in a loss to Memphis. The Kings continue to insist they will not trade the fiery big man, but having openly said he's demanded a trade, they're going to get offers.

You see where this is going. From the Boston Herald:
The Celtics, like most teams, have called Sacramento to gauge what it would take to trade for DeMarcus Cousins. The young, disgruntled Kings center has been suspended from the team for his disagreements with coach Paul Westphal.“It’s highly unlikely,” a league source said of the Celtics’ chances of landing Cousins. “I’m not sure that any team is going to get him. The thing is that everyone knows he’s a wreck. They’re not going to get what he’s worth.”
via Celtics plays it safe, sit hamstrung Jermaine O’Neal - BostonHerald.com.

The Celtics make a ton of sense as a trade partner. They have expiring contracts of veterans who could help the young players on the Kings go forward while keeping the team's financial flexibility. But they lack any significant asset to lure the Kings into even talking about moving Cousins, which they're resisting anyway. The Celtics wouldn't want to part with Rajon Rondo without getting a player like Tyreke Evans back alongside Cousins, and that's too much for the Kings to surrender, despite their struggles this year.

But for the moment, enjoy the concept of Kevin Garnett sharing a locker room with DeMarcus Cousins. The word, I believe, is kaboom.
Posted on: January 2, 2012 6:11 pm
Edited on: January 2, 2012 10:20 pm
 

Cousins to rejoin Kings as trade offers pop up

By Matt Moore

Update (9:45 p.m.): Cousins issued a statement via his agent and SI.com has the details. "I want to address my missing the New Orleans game Sunday. I have not demanded or requested a trade. I don't agree with the actions taken but will give my sincere effort to put it behind me and compete the best I can for my team."

In other words, this isn't over. Not by a long shot. 

*******

As the fallout from the Kings sending DeMarcus Cousins home following what Paul Westphal publicly described as a trade demand continues, teams are circling even as the Kings continue to say they are not trading the volatile young big man. 

SI.com reports that the Nets have expressed interest, and the Washinton Post says the Wizards have called to inquire about pairing Cousins with his Kentucky teammate John Wall in Washington. Both teams believe the Kings are following through on their refusal to trade him.  

In the same vein, Yahoo Sports reports that Cousins is going to joing the team on its road trip, effectively ending his suspension-that-isn't-a-suspension, or his grounding, or whatever.

If the Kings aren't going to trade him, and they were going to let him back on the team, then why announce to the world his situation? Westphal actually took a measured approach Sunday, saying that the reason was because one way or another the media would be asking about it. Still, it seems like throwing Cousins under the bus for very little gain. Expect the Kings to continue to receive offers, albeit low ones, to try and get the talented powder keg.
Posted on: January 2, 2012 12:07 pm
Edited on: January 2, 2012 2:50 pm
 

Kings say they will not trade DeMarcus Cousins



By Matt Moore


UPDATE: According to SI.com, the Cousins will re-join the Kings on their upcoming road trip to Memphis and Denver.

Despite the explosive situation between DeMarcus Cousins and head coach Paul Westphal, Kings ownership says it will not trade the temperamental but talented young power forward, ownership told the Sacramento Bee.
"We leave that stuff (the benching) to the basketball people," Kings co-owner Joe Maloof said before tipoff, "but we're not trading him."
via Ailene Voisin: Situation is 'tip of the iceberg,' coach says, so where is the rest? - Sacramento Sports - Kings, 49ers, Raiders, High School Sports | Sacramento Bee.

The Kings not trading Cousins is the proper path. There's absolutely no way to get adequate value after releasing a statement of the nature of Westphal's. They have a player they don't feel they can control, and with Cousins' talent, they can't simply dump him off, especially with the struggles of the team thus far this season.

As for Westphal, he spoke to reporters prior to the Kings' game against the Hornets. Kings blog Cowbell Kingdom has video, and the comments are pretty interesting.



Something that stands out here, is this quote from Westphal (transcribed by Cowbell Kingdom):
“Well, it’s interesting that he told me before he told his agent, but he told me twice. So it’s silly to have the agent deny it just because he didn’t get a call before DeMarcus talked to me that’s the easiest one of all to answer.”
Westphal is explicitly claiming that the trade request was legitimate and that Cousins simply hasn't informed his agent, rather than his agent's interpretation, which is that Cousins was saying, in effect, "If that's the situation, then trade me" which is different from a trade demand. We're talking semantics here, but they're important on all sides. 

It's also notable that Westphal says that to solve the situation, Cousins needs to do some soul searching. There's explicitly no claim of responsbility for the situation on Westphal's part. Which, if the situation is as bad as Westphal claims it is, isn't necessarily a fault. But it sets the table for how this situation is developing, which is that the coach feels this is all on the back of Cousins and not a two-way communication issue.

Tom Ziller at SBNation.com notes that the fact that the Kings did not suspend Cousins, instead just "sending him home," speaks to how the organization is being run. A suspension escalates the situation as it restricts his pay and can be appealed by the NBPA.

After this many incidents, however, at some point the Kings are going to have to face the situation head-on. Either Cousins is a part of the team's long-term future, or Westphal is. Because its hard to see either Cousins or Westphal changing their path at this point. It's not resolving itself, and even if Cousins is lacking in maturity, painting him into a corner this way isn't going to do anything to foster an environment of growth. Cousins may be too much of a problem to keep, but he's too talented to let go.

The Kings, for the moment, are stuck.

Here's reaction to the situation from Kings players after the game, courtesy of Cowbell Kingdom. There's a wide range of comments here, with the Kings players showing the kind of professionalism that Cousins needs to learn, even if Westphal is handling the situation badly (which is certainly up for interpretation). Yahoo Sports reports that Kings players have been irritated with Cousins' behavior for some time, with one source calling him "a bully."


Posted on: January 2, 2012 12:05 pm
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Posted on: January 2, 2012 12:02 pm
 

Kings say they will not trade DeMarcus Cousins

By Matt Moore

Despite the explosive situation between DeMarcus Cousins and head coach Paul Westphal, Kings ownership says it will not trade the temperamental but talented young power forward, ownership told the Sacramento Bee.
"We leave that stuff (the benching) to the basketball people," Kings co-owner Joe Maloof said before tipoff, "but we're not trading him."
via Ailene Voisin: Situation is 'tip of the iceberg,' coach says, so where is the rest? - Sacramento Sports - Kings, 49ers, Raiders, High School Sports | Sacramento Bee.

The Kings not trading Cousins is the proper path. There's absolutely no way to get adequate value after releasing a statement of the nature of Westphal's. They have a player they don't feel they can control, and with Cousins' talent, they can't simply dump him off, especially with the struggles of the team thus far this season.

As for Westphal, he spoke to reporters prior to the Kings' game against the Hornets. Kings blog Cowbell Kingdom has video, and the comments are pretty interesting.



Something that stands out here, is this quote from Westphal (transcribed by Cowbell Kingdom):
“Well, it’s interesting that he told me before he told his agent, but he told me twice. So it’s silly to have the agent deny it just because he didn’t get a call before DeMarcus talked to me that’s the easiest one of all to answer.”
Westphal is explicitly claiming that the trade request was legitimate and that Cousins simply hasn't informed his agent, rather than his agent's interpretation, which is that Cousins was saying, in effect, "If that's the situation, then trade me" which is different from a trade demand. We're talking semantics here, but they're important on all sides. 

It's also notable that Westphal says that to solve the situation, Cousins needs to do some soul searching. There's explicitly no claim of responsbility for the situation on Westphal's part. Which, if the situation is as bad as Westphal claims it is, isn't necessarily a fault. But it sets the table for how this situation is developing, which is that the coach feels this is all on the back of Cousins and not a two-way communication issue.

Tom Ziller at SBNation.com notes that the fact that the Kings did not suspend Cousins, instead just "sending him home," speaks to how the organization is being run. A suspension escalates the situation as it restricts his pay and can be appealed by the NBPA.

After this many incidents, however, at some point the Kings are going to have to face the situation head-on. Either Cousins is a part of the team's long-term future, or Westphal is. Because its hard to see either Cousins or Westphal changing their path at this point. It's not resolving itself, and even if Cousins is lacking in maturity, painting him into a corner this way isn't going to do anything to foster an environment of growth. Cousins may be too much of a problem to keep, but he's too talented to let go.

The Kings, for the moment, are stuck.

Here's reaction to the situation from Kings players after the game, courtesy of Cowbell Kingdom. There's a wide range of comments here, with the Kings players showing the kind of professionalism that Cousins needs to learn, even if Westphal is handling the situation badly (which is certainly up for interpretation). Yahoo Sports reports that Kings players have been irritated with Cousins' behavior for some time, with one source calling him "a bully."

Posted on: January 2, 2012 1:34 am
 

Cousins: Don't listen to everything you hear

Posted by Royce Young

The Kings put out a statement on behalf of coach Paul Westphal that said DeMarcus Cousins demanded a trade and was suspended for Sunday's game against the Hornets. Reportedly, Cousins was heard shouting at Westphal after Friday's game, "Trade me!" in the hallway.

Cousins agent refuted that the Kings' release and said his client has not demanded a trade. And Cousins did the same Sunday night on Twitter.

Obviously something is going on. Cousins may not want you to believe what the Kings say or reporters report, but it's hard not to assume there's some serious fire with this smoke. There's too much of a history with Cousins to give himt the benefit of the doubt here.
Posted on: January 1, 2012 6:51 pm
Edited on: January 2, 2012 1:50 am
 

Kings say DeMarcus Cousins demanded trade

Posted by Royce Young

DeMarcus Cousins has always had a tag on him: immature. But that's often giving Cousins the benefit of the doubt. Because some might feel the right word is "head-case." One of those people might be Kings coach Paul Westphal.

The Kings released a surprising statement from Westphal regarding Cousins saying point blank that the young big man has demanded a trade. And as a result, Cousins has been told to stay home and won't be playing against the Hornets Sunday night.
“Whenever a new season begins, in any sport, there is great hope that everything will progress in only a steady, upward direction. As we all know, it seldom happens like that in this life! As coaches, we can only ask that our players do everything they can to improve themselves as individuals and teammates.

If they do this with all their hearts, we live with the results. Everything that happens on a team does not become known to the public. This is how it should be. However, when a player continually, aggressively, lets it be known that he is unwilling/unable to embrace traveling in the same direction as his team, it cannot be ignored indefinitely. DeMarcus Cousins has demanded to be traded.

In the best interest of our team as we go forward, he has been directed by me, with the support of management, to stay home from the New Orleans game tonight.”
Here's the odd thing: Cousins' agent John Greig tells SI.com it isn't true.

"DeMarcus never demanded a trade. I'm surprised the Kings, if they believe the player wanted a trade, wouldn't have made a phone call to his representative. Maybe Westphal is just feeling the Heat early this season."

I'm trying to infer from Westphal's comments and Greig's subsequent denial, but maybe Westphal is saying Cousins has demanded a trade with his actions. Or that Westphal has demanded that Cousins demand a trade. A "him or me" approach.

This comes after Cousins was asked recently about the Kings offense and he quipped, "What offense?" which is obviously a jab at Westphal. Cousins also took to Twitter late Sunday and refuted it as well.



Westphal has battled with Cousins since the Kings drafted him in 2010. Last season, Cousins was suspended by the team for an altercation with Donte Greene, he's been ejected and he's mocked opponents for choking only to get benched for it. The guy hasn't had a smooth run so far in the NBA.

Cousins has a tattoo on his leg that says "misunderstood.
" Red flag! He constantly feels like he's being picked on, singled out. And it seems that it's either going to be him or Westphal that goes in Sacramento. Because the two can't co-exist. What the Kings are going through is what so many team anticipated before the draft in 2010. Most felt that Cousins probably was the most talented player out there, except he might be a problem child. Which it appears he is.
Posted on: December 14, 2011 1:20 pm
Edited on: December 15, 2011 1:54 am
 

2011-12 NBA Season: Pacific Division Preview



By Matt Moore


We're less than two weeks away from the start of the 2011-2012 NBA season. After an interminable lockout and a rushed free agency period, here's a first look division-by-division preview at how the league is shaping up. We begin with the Pacific Division.

2011 Standings:

Los Angeles Lakers, 57-25, lost 4-0 to Dallas Mavericks in 2nd round of Western Conference Playoffs
Phoenix Suns, 42-42, NBA Draft lottery
Golden State Warriors,36-46, NBA Draft lottery
Los Angeles Clippers, 32-50, NBA Draft lottery
Sacramento Kings, 24-58, NBA Draft lottery

Best team: Well, see, the thing is... Chris Paul (UPDATE: TIE- LOS ANGELES LAKERS AND LOS ANGELES CLIPPERS)

Chris Paul was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers Tuesday night. Even with the Lakers unable to obtain Paul, the combination of Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, and Andrew Bynum is probably enough to take the honors here. But with Paul joining Blake Griffin, even without Eric Gordon, the additions of Caron Butler, Chauncey Billups and re-signing DeAndre Jordan make as tough of a team to face as any. Griffin's impact next to Chris Paul is nearly incalculable.

The Lakers may still have the edge, but after the loss of Odom, everything is up in the air as far as who runs Staples now. The reality is that Paul landing in the city of L.A. will shift the division in one direction or another for the next half-decade at least.

Worst team: Sacramento Kings

The Kings are tricky. They have a convoluted backcourt. Tyreke Evans took a step back last season and it remains to be seen if it was all injury-related or not. There's no telling how Jimmer Fredette will adjust to the pro level. Marcus Thornton will struggle for minutes despite his all-around ability. John Salmons is floating around. There were huge chemistry questions last season and the players struggled against coach Paul Westphal at times.

If things don't improve, if DeMarcus Cousins doesn't mature, if Chuck Hayes can't protect the rim enough with his diminutive stature, things could get bad. And yet...

Biggest surprise: Sacramento Kings

There's so much firepower in that backcourt. Untangling it is complicated but they have everything. Shooting, athleticism, size, range, explosiveness, savvy, handle, everything. They have too much ability to not be effective in some ways. Cousins was a beast last season and even a small amount of maturity and development means he could be a near-All-Star (in the East, the West is too stacked). They have young talented bigs and Hayes who provides savvy and veteran knowledge.

The pieces are there. They're going to be exciting, even if they're struggling with an identity.

Three Best Players: Kobe Bryant, Blake Griffin, Pau Gasol, Steve Nash, Chris Paul

Update: With Paul joining the division, he instantly becomes one of the three best players. The best pure point guard in the league, with excellent shooting touch, terrific defense, and a supreme will to win? He leap-frogs both Pau and Nash. 

Kobe Bryant needs no explanation, even at his age. The end.

Blake Griffin is the most explosive player in the league and the first player in a few years for people to say he could legitimately be the best player in the league at one point. His explosiveness and rebounding is unmatched, his mid-range jumper isn't lightyears away and his defense will get there. Already, Griffin is a force to be reckoned with. What happens when he gets better?

Gasol vs. Nash? Gasol was an early season MVP candidate. He is arguably the most skilled big man in the league (as opposed to Dwight Howard, the most dominant and most talented). And yet his collapse in the 2011 playoffs is the stuff of legend. It was such a complete failure at both ends, when the Lakers needed him most, it's damning. Gasol could very well be the second best player in this division this year. He could also slide back with age.

Nash? Ho-hum, another 50-40-90 season (got to round up for once, but still). His weighted assists, factoring three-pointers assisted on, left him at 13, which means combined with his 15 points per game, he contributed 41 points per game to the Suns. That's absurd. It's also not the highest in the league for a point guard, but it's still an example of how good Nash is. He's flat-out old in relative terms of the league, and yet is in the best shape he possibly could be thanks to conditioning. Nash is still elite, an therefore neither he nor Gasol can be exempted.

Biggest Question: Can Golden State change its stripes?

Mark Jackson has to completely turn what the Warriors know as their identity inside out. They have to commit to defensive principles. David Lee, Monta Ellis, Stephen Curry, these players are not known for this, at all. It's going to take a miracle. If Jackson can get them to buy in and if his system is good enough, the Warriors could make a jump. Kwame Brown helps down low (don't laugh, he's become a quality defender). But there's so much to be done in terms of changing this team's indentity, the Warriors could be in for rocky seas.

2012 Projected Standings:
1. Los Angeles Lakers
2. Los Angeles Clippers
3. Golden State Warriors
4. Phoenix Suns
5. Sacramento Kings
 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com