Sacramento Kings’ Management and Coach Beefing over Trading Demarcus Cousins
By Brandon Simmons
Since the NBA season ended last week, free agent/trade rumors have been running rampant. While there have been a couple of offseason moves already made, there might not be any bigger at the moment than the drama surrounding Sacramento Kings center Demarcus Cousins. Cousins is entering the final year of his contract but he might be playing this upcoming season in a completely different uniform.
The 2010 number 5 overall pick has caught the love of the Sacramento fan base as well as management. Owner Vivek Ranadive says there is “zero interest” to moving Cousins.
“I have no idea where that’s coming from,” Ranadive told USA Today Sports. “We have no interest in moving him. From my perspective, it’s really simple: We feel that he’s a one-of-a-kind player, and we have a group of players right now and we’re going to build on it.”
That sounds like a great endorsement for management, but from the coaching side of things there may be a different story to tell. This offseason the Kings have hired former Denver Nuggets coach George Karl and granted him the power of selecting draft picks and making a couple of trades. Karl was asked whether or not Cousins would be traded but could not exactly answer the question directly.
“My interest right now is commitment, trust and building a team that’s excited about being in Sacramento,” said Karl.
As for Cousins’ input, the situation gets slightly messier with a cryptic tweet he sent out.
— DeMarcus Cousins (@boogiecousins) June 23, 2015
Aside from all the tweets and hearsay, it would probably be best for Cousins to find himself a new team. Sources say that the Lakers and Kings are trying to work out a “framework” of a deal to trade Cousins but nothing has been solidified yet. It has been a long time since the Kings have had any real success and the team appears to be heading nowhere fast again. Last season they won 29 games with three head coaches, including Karl, who was hired in February and signed a four year deal. Cousins is a prolific scoring center and has his whole career in front of him. He needs to welcome the idea of a trade to save that career because nobody can save the Kings.
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